On Castro near 17th and Market, near where pedestrian Sutchi Hui landed after getting hit by a bike rider earlier this year:
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Heretofore, I’d only seen, you know, the other kind of nun.
The 8th Annual Walk for Life West Coast will start at Civic Center this year.
Will organizers lie about attendance by simply adding 5000 people to the previous year’s estimate as is their custom? We’ll just have to wait and see. Somebody will document the crowd overestimating, but I don’t know if it will be me this year…
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All the deets:
“Due to a scheduling conflict, the Walk for Life will be unable to follow its familiar route from Justin Herman Plaza and along San Francisco’s waterfront to Marina Green. Instead, we will be gathering at Civic Center Plaza at 11:00 am for the Info Fair to be followed by the rally at 12:30 pm. At 1:30 we will start walking down Market Street to Justin Herman Plaza. There will be no additional events at Justin Herman Plaza.
We are excited about this new opportunity and believe that this new venue will give us the chance to grow our numbers. More information to come so please sign up for our email blasts to keep informed of these important changes.
HOTEL UPDATE: We have sold out of the rooms at the San Francisco Marriott Fisherman’s Wharf Hotel. We were able to negotiate a discounted rate at the Kabuki Hotel in Japantown (very close to the Cathedral) for $139/night. For further options, gohere.
Confirmed speakers include: Lori Hoye, Dr. Vansen Wong, Rev. Clenard Childress and Jacquie Stalnaker.
Your District Five Blog has the deets on today’s events for the victims of the big fire in the Western Addition on December 22, 2011.
Maybe someday the liars over at Walk For Life West Coast will explain how a march that was only two-thirds the length of last year’s (48 minutes (or so) long in 2010 and 31 minutes long in 2011*) could have 5000 more people.
It’s a miracle!?
It’s worth noting that nobody had a crowd estimate of less than 22K last year and nobody independent from the movement has a an estimate north of 20k this year. I put it at 16k and KGO 7 ABC TV is saying “about 20,000.” The organizers, under enormous pressure to claim ever growing attendance, claim 40,000+. Oh well.
Anyway, here are a few shots from this afternoon, starting with the counters.
The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence were on hand. I’d say 5000 souls saw this sister and a fellow sister today – they were the focus of the march, particularly on the right side of the river of people going by. Here’s your welcome to San Francisco:
Tax Church Property and INVESTMENTS! Sure, sounds good to me.
And here’s Frank Chu, in the middle, going on about the Galaxies, as per usual:
And here’s the main body, 16k or so marchers from all over California and beyond:
St. Patrick’s Teens, Sonora, in the hiz-ouse:
Some people from Fowler, CA? Sounds far away:
Yes We Can change:
“Flower” and “shears”:
A brace from Sacramento:
Save the human babies. Of course! Human babies, that changes everything!
And there you have it.
*We’re talking about at the start here, people. Ferry Plaza was a ghost town by 12:33 PM. If the same number of people showed up as last year, it would have taken until about 12:50 PM for everybody to get going. Obviously, the march will spread out over time and narrow due to the way the course is set up.
[UPDATE: Here are some photos. Oh, and Protest Shooter has some video showing way more than "maybe 100" counter-protesters, which he undercounts for ideological reasons, and showing way less than "40,000" marchers, which he undercounts for, wait for it, ideological reasons. The fact remains that it took last year's crowd 48 minutes to clear out but this year's only 31 minutes.]
How about 16,000 for an estimate of those marching up Embarcadero from the Ferry Building / Justin Herman Plaza area? So, that would be less than half of the officially estimated and very optimistic 35,000 count from last year, or, comparing apples to apples, about two-thirds of last year’s attendance, which was in the 22k, 23k, 24k neighborhood.
Here’s my estimate from last year, complete with my criticism of a ridiculously low number (that some took seriously) from the San Francisco Chronicle. Seems odd that multiple independent sources came in at around the same low-to-middle 20,000s and the organizers were at a pie-in-the sky 35k. Last year’s crowd took 48 minutes to get going, but this year’s took just 31, so you do the math. (And in case there’s any doubt here, crowd counting-wise, like the suitor and his ring in Oh Brother Where Art Thou, I’m bona fide. I got there a couple minutes before noon and I was like Sherman, where are all the white people? How can the organizers claim to not be aware of the smaller crowd this year if it was so obvious to me from the get-go?)
Of course some are wed to the idea of constantly growing numbers:
“American Missionary – Great weather in SF west coast walk for life. 40,000+ in attendance.”
Will organizers tell the truth and say that their numbers are down year-over-year or will they simply lie? [UPDATE - KGO 7 ABC TV is saying about 20,000 and as for what the organizers are saying, see below]
As it looked at the start at around 12:02 PM, Saturday, January 22nd, 2011 CE. The much smaller counterprotesting pro-choice march went up Herb Caen Way in parallel – they were gone in 160 seconds or so.
Please remember, WFLWC spinners:
[UPDATE: That's it, as of 2:31 PM, Saturday, January 22nd, in the Year of Our Lord 2011, they are going for the lie:
At least 40,000 stand up for Life!"
Now, how could it be that a march that took three-quarters of an hour (more or less) to pass by Embarcadero and Broadway in 2010 is smaller than today's, one that took a half-hour (more or less) to pass by Embarcadero and Broadway?
Saying that there were about 40,000 people marching today isn't spin, it's a sin. Appears as if organizer Dolores Meehan is a big fat liar. She might not be aware of the actual numbers precisely, but she's got to know that the size of the crowd is waaaaaay down this year. What would she say next year if the parade only takes 15 minutes to get out of Ferry Plaza? She'd say 45,000, natch.
I mean, is that cool? Exaggerate more and more each year until nobody believes you? Is that how you roll?
And others are doing their best to prove the Rule of Three:
And here's the official press release. Pure horseshit:
"Record-breaking Turnout for Walk for Life West Coast in San Francisco
SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Tens of thousands of pro-life activists filled Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco's downtown and then walked 2.5 miles along the waterfront in a record-breaking turnout for the 7th Annual Walk for Life West Coast.
"We are here to break the bondage of the culture of death," Walk for Life co-chair Dolores Meehan told the crowd that stretched as far as the eye could see.
"If we care for the baby, we have to care for the mother and father," said speaker Kathleen Eaton, who funded Birth Choice Clinics in Orange County after her own abortion.
The Walk was held on the 38th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion.
"Today on January 22nd, I do not honor choice any more, I mourn choice," said former Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson, who walked away from her job at a Texas Planned Parenthood clinic on October 6, 2009, after assisting in an ultrasound-guided abortion of a 13-week-old fetus. "You are the new generation of the pro-life movement and I can tell you Planned Parenthood is shaking in their boots."
"Nothing is too big for God to forgive," said Mary Poirer, who told the story of her three abortions.
Rev. Brian Walker, who, with his wife Denise, chose to abort their child four months before their wedding, said he deserted his wife when she needed him. "Many years ago there was not a man in the house, there was a male in the house, but there was not a man in the house," said Walker. "Everybody suffers in the wake of abortion."
"We've lost close to 40 percent of our population to abortion," said Rev. Denise Walker, founder of Everlasting Light Ministries, referring to the high rate of African American abortions. "We must end this slaughter."
A densely packed crowd of least 40,000 walked 20 across in a line that stretched over a mile. The Walk route started at Justin Herman Plaza in downtown San Francisco and concluded at Marina Green in sight of Golden Gate Bridge.
Founded in 2005 by a group of San Francisco Bay Area residents, the Walk for Life West Coast's mission is to change the perceptions of a society that thinks abortion is the answer.
Well, as expected, the March for Life West Coast went off yesterday with a whole bunch of people involved. That’s tens of thousands minimum, but the SFPD saw fit to block access to a vantage point on a pedestrian bridge this year. So, that’s as good an estimate as you’re going to get here – tens of thousands.
You can see what it looked like with a lot of photos here but also and here and here and here, or even here, from The Deacon 4 Life or from the IndyBay.org here and here. This event was international news, but it was ignored by most of the denizens of San Francisco. Some merchants welcomed the visitors with open arms, anyway.
Interestingly, the March for Life rally employed help from Michael S. Hensley PARTY Rental & Sales Co. (650) 583-0337. Boy oh boy[cott], that’s brave.
Anyway, this was the bulk of the crowd of pro-choice counter protesters at the start of the noontime march. There were hundreds on the pro-choice side, or several hundreds if you prefer.
From the Ferry Building area all the way up Embarcadero on their way to Fishermans Wharf and beyond.
A closer look at the vanguard reveals that fashion (Channel funglasses, hoop earrings, French manicures and high heeled suede boots) was the order of the day. These are the people the organizers handpicked to represent the face of yesterday’s parade.
For a while there, both sides were in formation heading up Herb Caen Way and the Embarc.
The SFPD was out in force, as per usual. Here, the bicycle corps keeps ‘em separated
A home-made sign, one of many. A few referenced Barack Obama.
The sole svástika of the day.
On the other side, some people just stood on the sidewalk and stared at the oncoming parade.
Instead of “I’m with Stupid,” we have “I’m With Fascists”
And on no side in particular, Frank Chu (the “Galaxy Guy” per one SFPD officer).
A Mount Rushmore of sanctimonious iPodded teens…
…walking past this fellow handing out free condoms. That pretty much sums things up.
Guess what? Even more photos after the jump