Violent J knows a thing or two about clowns.
Real name Joseph Bruce, the 44-year-old rapper is one half of “Insane Clown Posse,” a clown makeup-wearing rap duo whose followers are called Juggalos and who were labeled as a “loosely organized hybrid gang” by the FBI back in 2011.
As someone who has immersed himself in clown culture for nearly 30 years, Violent J is certainly in the loop about the recent ‘epidemic’ of people donning clown masks and terrorizing local communities and colleges. In a recent op-ed for Time, he laid out what he thinks is the real clown problem that people should be worried about.
Cut to 2016. Everyone once again is seeing so-called “killer clowns” everywhere—popping out of bushes, threatening people on social media and assorted other public pranks. Cops have actually arrested a few people this time around, though, because there’s a lot of copycats out there and mass hysteria has a way of making people do stupid s—.
But as ICP has discovered over the last decade, there’s a whole army of scary, terrifying and dangerous clowns out there in this country trying to suppress the rights of thousands of people to exercise the most basic part of the Declaration of Independence, which evokes the freedom to “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” The only difference is these clowns don’t wear greasepaint.
Violent J paints quite the harrowing picture. But who are the true clowns, you ask? According to the Michigan-based rapper, it’s the FBI and the NSA that everyone should really be worried about.
If you want to see the ultimate example of these “killer clowns” in action, consider what happened to our hard-working, mostly blue-collar fans, the Juggalos. In 2011, the FBI named the Juggalos in its National Gang Threat Assessment. Ever since, they have been targeted, profiled and blatantly discriminated on by law enforcement agencies across America. Over the last four years, we’ve been working with our legal team and the ACLU of Michigan, to prove to the U.S. Department of Justice that this completely ridiculous gang label slapped on Juggalos is literally destroying lives.
Fact: People simply walking their dogs while wearing an ICP shirt have been stopped, searched and added to the local gang member database—when no crime has been committed. This has happened hundreds and hundreds of times across the U.S., and the stories just get worse from there. Recently, there was a probation officer who was let go for being identified as a Juggalo, and her employer had no problem writing it as the reason for her severance in her termination paperwork. Others have lost their jobs, custody of their kids and been subject to illegal search and seizure.
Violent J his op-ed with a call to arms of sorts, claiming that on Sept. 16 of next year, Insane Clown Posse will be having a two-day free concert at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., where he, along with thousands of Juggalos, will to gather to send a message to the U.S. Department of Justice that “the discrimination against Juggalos must be seen for the unconstitutional travesty it is.”
Be sure to mark your calendars.