How many Marchers in DC?on September 18th, 2009 at 8:54 am
Here is an image taken last Saturday (9/12) from the Capitol Building in Washington that puts the lie to absurdly low turnout estimates.
Does that look like 50,000-70,000 people to you?
If you hear anything from our opponents about an “official estimate,” that is a false claim. That number came from the DC Fire Department, who has no official status of any kind regarding estimates like this.
DC Metro rail ridership for that day tallied 437,624 riders, almost 250,000 above average. Bus fares were also up by about 100,000.
The people who were there know the truth.
Here is an interesting observation that comes from Kenneth Happel, via the Heritage Foundation web site.
I was the medical coordinator for the event. I believe that there were at least a million people there and a million and a half would be my best bet.
I don’t know where the “official estimate” quoted as 60,000 comes from. The event permit, and Chief Lyles fire department resource allocation, was based upon 50,000 (because we couldn’t prove more beforehand)and that number of people was supposed to be contained in the central section of the west lawn between the sidewalks extending from the freedom and grant statues.
I counted the crowd entering Penn. Ave. to determine how many first aid team people were needed and where. I made my count at Freedom Plaza after the police radio had indicated that the front of the march had reached Capital Circle. I used the following method. We counted the number of people stretching across Penn. Ave. from curb to curb for a distance down the street of ten feet. That number was divided in half (assuming that there were variations in how tightly people were packed)and multiplied by the number of ten foot intervals from Freedom Park to Capitol Circle. At 8:00 the count was 200,000. I inserted a medical team at that point and when it reached Capitol Circle the whole avenue had filled again and I inserted my team. So at about 9:30 the total attendance from the march was, conservatively, about 400,000. The avenue continued to pumo in people fopr another two hours. So I estimate about 600,000 came through that route.
There was also a very large stream that filled the whole street from the train station to Capitol circle and people that came on the underground said that it was simply packed with people coming out at the protest site (both these flows were not part of the march).
The National Park Service published its estimating method in USA Today, when they provided an estimate for President Obama’s inaguration. That method estimates by filled area.
The west lawn (all three sections were filled solid with little space between people)the shoulders around the building and the area directly around the reflecting pool is 240,000 by the NPS estimating method. The mall from the reflecting pool to the cross street before the Washington Monument is 940,000 according to the NPS. The first section of the mall nearest the Washingon Monument was reserved for the NAACP’s Family event. Our folks, at the height of the event, stretched from the cross street before the NAACP event all the way to the relfecting pool and were packed. I would guess that its 4/5 of the 940,000 or 750,000 people together that’s a million. Then there was the area from first street to third street (third street goes to the train station). First street was so crowded the police had to clear it. The crowd also filled most of the area around and between the museums on each side, with the greatest density in the half of the mall nearest the reflecting pool. You could easily add another half million with these two areas.
That’s how I came to an estimate of one to one and a half million.
Under no possible stretch of the imagination or should I say contraction of the imagination were there only 60,000.