The Juggalos have invaded our nation’s capital.
On Saturday afternoon, the group gathered at the National Mall to protest the FBI’s classification of Juggalos as a “loosely-organized hybrid gang” in the 2011 National Gang Threat Assessment. Protesters claimed the designation was unwarranted and has resulted in the discrimination, profiling, and harassment of Juggalos across the country. For those who are unfamiliar, “Juggalos” are fans of the Detroit hip-hip duo Insane Clown Posse, commonly identified by their black-and-white clown makeup or ICP’s hatchetman symbol.
“This is the day that we are asking every single Juggalo to join us in our nation’s capital, Washington, D.C., to make a collective statement from the Juggalo Family to the world about what we are and what we are not,” the march’s website read. “Recently Psychopathic Records’ court case in our lawsuit against the FBI and Department of Justice for listing Juggalos as a “loosely organized hybrid gang” in their 2011 Gang Task Force report was once again dismissed, meaning we are back to square one from a legal standpoint. We have tried to use the American judicial system to achieve justice and we failed […] We are taking out fight to the streets. Literally.”
According to the National Gang Threat Assessment, Juggalos are recognized as a gang in four states because of their gang-like behavior, criminal activity, and violence. The assessment cites two instances: One in 2010 when two “suspected Juggalos” were charged with assaulting and robbing a homeless man; and another in 2011 when a “suspected Juggalo” shot and wounded a couple in Washington state.
Protesters argue it is unfair to categorize an entire group based on the actions of several members. In 2014, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit against the FBI on behalf of ICP fans. They claimed the gang classification infringed on their right to free speech, according to Bustle.
“[Like] other musical fan bases, the vast majority of Juggalos have nothing to do with criminal activity, let alone organized crime,” a recent legal brief read.
Organizers said they hope today’s march will bring more attention to their fight; however, they aren’t the only group rallying in D.C. today. As pointed out by CBS News, the pro-Trump "Mother of All Rallies" is also taking place in the same location. Organizers of the Juggalo March have expressed concerns about possible conflicts between the protesters.
“We're concerned for the safety of the Juggalos. The last thing we want is any kind of clashes or violence. We're just here for a peaceful march," Farris Haddad, an attorney for Insane Clown Posse, told CBS News. "After Charlottesville, we were like, 'Holy (expletive), this could be a problem.’”
As of 3 p.m. ET, authorities had not made any arrests related to the protests.
ICP's Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope also participated in the event.
You can check out more photos and videos from the march below.