Yes. I’m going to the Juggalo March in Washington DC this weekend. A lot of people have commented to me that they thought it was some sort of a goof. It’s not a goof at all. This is an important civil rights march for all music fans. In case you don’t know, the FBI officially classified Juggalos as a gang in 2011. As best as anyone can tell, they don’t have much evidence to back up said classification. Classifying a group as a gang is supposed to mean you can meet a burden of proof that there is ongoing organized criminal activity. If there’s one thing Juggalos are NOT, it is organized. Or we weren’t, until now.
You may think this is funny too, but it’s no laughing matter. This means that people who wear their shirts, or put stickers on their cars, or have ICP or hatchet man tattoos can automatically, and LEGALLY, be considered gang members. This has caused a lot of problems for Insane Clown Posse fans. People have lost their jobs, been denied government aid, and maybe most relatable to my friends, been subject to unreasonable search and seizure. Displaying any artwork related to Insane Clown Posse now qualifies “probable cause” for the law enforement to search you and / or your vehicle.
This is how it starts. Who could be next? Deadheads? What if a Steal Your Face sticker, or a Grateful Dead t-shirt or tattoo or a tie dye gave police legal cause to search you. Certainly one trip down “Shakedown Street” could give the Bureau enough evidence of “organized criminal activity” to label Deadheads a gang.
This has to be stopped in it’s tracks. Insane Clown Posse hired a lawyer to sue the FBI, and they have been unsuccessful, so far. But the ACLU has joined their fight, and it, and we, are not going away quietly.
THAT’s why we are going to march on Washington this weekend. Somebody asked me today if I identify as a Juggalo. That was a tough question to answer. I’d like to think so, though hardcore Juggalos might disagree. I don’t own every album, nor have I even listened to every album. But I listen to them regularly and enjoy a lot of their music. And I’ve had enough positive experiences with the band and their fans as both a patron and promoter that I got a Hatchetman tattoo in 2012. And ‘Ive been to the Gathering of the Juggalos festival twice, travelled to Hartford and even Detroit to see them, and have had nothing but fun and great times hanging with Juggalos. And yes, I did get beaten up at the Gathering, but that was an outlier experience, and I’m not sure that the guys who so cowardly attacked me from behind were even Juggalos, but the dozen or so Juggalos who came to my aid and cared for me after the beating certainly were and that was one of the kindest outpourings of assistance I’ve ever witnessed.
And that’s why Im going to DC this weekend. History has a way off repeating itself. We are at a vital crossroads in American history right now. And I don’t want to live in a fascist state. And classifying music fans as a gang is a pretty fucken loud warning shot across the bow of freedom.
WHOOP WHOOP! MMFWCL, Y’all.