Protest Turnout: A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Lies

Popular right-wing blogger Charles Johnson of Little Green Footballs wrote a post on Saturday called “What If They Gave a Protest and Nobody Came?” It was picked up by various bloggers including Michelle Malkin, who called it “fair and balanced” coverage of the protest.

In the post, Johnson published the photo below as evidence of the “media’s tendency to exaggerate,” arguing that “it looks like the turnout was much less than 100,000 people.” Johnson noted later in the day that “Al-Reuters” had also used the 100,000 number, despite the fact that the picture below “refutes” that claim.

Note to Johnson and Malkin: Maybe the reason the photo didn’t show many marchers is because the photo wasn’t of the march. That actually went down 15th Street, as they could have seen from this map of the route:

To judge the size of a demonstration down 15th Street, it’s probably best to use a photo that actually includes 15th Street, like the shot below. (You’ll notice the throngs of marchers filling up the street for several blocks.)