Size Doesn’t Matter. Lies Do. 


A rally, by definition, is a means of doing something. A rally is a muster for a common purpose. One rallies in furtherance of a greater goal. A rally is not an end in and of itself — when it comes to a rally, what matters is the practical impact on policy and direction of the country which occurs in its wake.

As such, the size of a rally is not of critical importance. Small gatherings have led to history-altering movements. Large throngs of people have come together and then dispersed with little if anything to show for their efforts. Time and subsequent events are the judge of a rally’s effectiveness. In light of that, however inspiring and cathartic yesterday’s Women’s Rally was — and it truly was — it was mere prologue. A statement of purpose and intent. The coming days, weeks, months and years will determine whether the Women’s Rally was a harbinger of great and needed change or, alternatively, merely a moment in time.

The same can be said of the inaugural crowds. I and others have noted how sparsely-attended Friday’s festivities were — and they were — but it’s not truly significant. I suspect, and poll numbers imply, that it is suggestive of a lack of widespread support and enthusiasm for the president and that, at some point, that lack of widespread support and enthusiasm will be a problem for him, but it’s also the case that he never had widespread support during the election. He won that election, however, and he could easily accomplish many of his goals absent widespread support. Again: small gatherings have led to history-altering movements. Both good and bad.

That said, the president seems pretty fixated on the size of his Inaugural crowd, with he and his surrogates lying about how big it was in a comically obvious and aggressive manner. Though they didn’t comment about the size of the Women’s Rally, I suspect that we’ll see some reality-denying pushback about its size by Trump supporters in the coming days, if it hasn’t happened already. Both claims, relating to the Inaugural and the Women’s Rally, easily disprovable by objective evidence available to anyone with the ability to see that which is directly in front of their face.

As I said, though: the politics of crowd size, however, interesting, are not super important one way or the other. What is important here is the lie.

If Donald Trump and his spokesmen are willing to blatantly and shamelessly lie about the most simple, observable and verifiable facts, what are they willing to do with information to which only they are privy?

Craig Calcaterra

Craig is the author of the daily baseball (and other things) newsletter, Cup of Coffee. He writes about other things at He lives in New Albany, Ohio with his wife, two kids, and many cats.