barriers.jpgToday’s front page has an eerie photograph of huge concrete towers atop sand dunes.

But read the caption: “A new vehicle barrier just north of San Luis Rio Colorado, Mexico.” Now if these are vehicle barriers, can’t a car just drive through what appear to be 20-foot wide gaps between the towers?

Of course not. Once again, we are misled by non-informative captions, and an article missing basic who-what-why facts. It’s a beautiful shot by award-winning photojournalist Ann Johansson, but it’s the paper’s fault for not documenting the documentation! If the gap is less than 5′-7″, the approximate width of a 2007 Mini Cooper — one of the smallest cars a poor Mexican emigrant would consider using to escape poverty and a lack of work — and certainly less than the 7′-2″ it would take to ram a Hummer H3 through, the space between the posts must be about 4′-6″. Which would indicate that their vertical height must be about 5′ or 6′. So a person standing in the picture would be about the height of the barrier.

San Luis Rio ColoradoAnd why do these striking objects march in alternating heights? Are there crews of American or Mexican workers who erect these things? Are they precast elements that are driven around on the backs of trucks? Do I really want all these facts? NO! It’s not the point of the article. I only want hard information if you put a giant 8 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ photograph right smack in the middle of page 1. Otherwise, don’t do it. Instead, use an image showing constructon workers building these things. Show some border patrol officials observing the work. A picture that tells the story, not art photography that I hope to see some day at an art gallery of Ann’s work! Sorry, Ann. It’s not you, it’s your disappointing employer.

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