I just spent this lovely Sunday organizing and editing close to 500 photos from yesterday's historic march in DC. I am still inspired by the sheer joy expressed by the million marchers in DC.
Can we say this is the Woodstock for conservatives? Absolutely. I'd even say if MLK were alive, he would be out marching to the Capitol with the people and give a rocking speech.
Several impressions from the Rally:
A million plus attendees is my estimate of the crowd size. Compare the official crowd estimator from the 2009 Inauguration (fig. 1) to the screen cap taken of the crowds (fig. 2) yesterday. I will say there were more patriots yesterday than fans at the January 20th inauguration. Metro police say 1.2 million and they would know a thing or two about crowd counts.
I traveled to DC via a chartered bus from West Chester - I have to give kudos to Paula Stiles for taking the initiative to organize this bus trip. I must admit that it was good to be on the bus instead of being thrown under the bus. Our group arrived at Union Station and Dee and myself made our way to Freedom Square where we came upon a massive amount of people:
For a moment or two, I didn't know where to start photographing. I got over that real quick and shot almost 500 photos on Saturday, not including video.
Wading through the crowd, we found ourself swept away by the mass movement of people marching to the Capitol:
99.9 percent of the signs were hand made and held proudly:
The mood of the crowd was that of sheer delight, as many of the participants have never participated in a public rally. Yet here they were, in Washington DC, marching with a million fellow patriots to the front lawn of the Capitol Building. You could sense a carefree joy as the marchers realized they were making history and that they were not alone in their beliefs. Waves of rolling chants from the back of the line to the front energized the crowd and gave me goosebumps.
Arriving at the lawn of the Capitol Building the crowd was densely packed yet extremely civil - I never heard so many "pardon me" as I wandered through the crowd snapping photos and videotaping. People were open, friendly and happy to pose for a photo or laugh at your jokes.
I've covered many liberal protests over the years and can only say that the difference in deportment stems from what brings the groups together. Where the 9/12 Teaparty supporters gather around a mutual love of country, the leftists rallied around a common hatred - namely GWB and/or the United States. The difference is everything.
Congressman Mike Pence spoke to the amassed crowd and gets the gold star with this comment:
"There are some politicians who think of you people as astroturf. Un-American. I've got to be honest with you, after nine years of fighting runaway spending her on this hill, you people look like the cavalry to me."
This was a watershed event, a powerful call to action that resonates with a rally held in DC on August 28, 1963. America started on the long road of change on that sultry August day, now 47 years later, America is renewed again.
Oh yes, Sarah Palin was on the minds of the marchers:
You can review my complete set of photos from the 9/12 March on Flickr.