Juggalos march in Washington to protest 'gang' label by Federal Bureau of Investigation

Carla Harmon
September 17, 2017

Given the events in Charlottesville in August, when a right-wing demonstration ended in the death of anti-racism activist Heather Heyer, there had been concern about the nature of the rally, but on Saturday afternoon all seemed calm. There is an annual festival called the Gathering of the Juggalos, sponsored by Psychopathic and featuring its artists as well as other musicians.

Protesters march from the White House to the Russian ambassador's residence in Washington, Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017, during a rally encouraging leaders to defend American democracy from Russian interference.

The self-described Mother of All Rallies, created to support President Trump and "defend American culture", was staged on the National Mall late Saturday morning. The Juggalo March will take place on the National Mall in front of the Lincoln Memorial beginning at 2PM. Founded in Detroit in 1989 by duo Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope, Insane Clown Posse performs a brand of hip hop known as "horrorcore", which is influenced by supernatural themes and violent horror movie imagery. The march was described on its website as "a collective statement from the Juggalo Family to the world about what we are and what we are not".

"We represent people who weren't born with a silver spoon in their mouth but instead with a rusty fork", one member of the group, Violent J, said during an interview in 1995.

As reported by the Business Insider, it was back in 2011 that the FBI Gang Threat Assessment report listed the Juggalos as a gang, saying small-time criminal behavior by those Insane Clown Posse fans has a larger potential for "gang-like" activity.

In 2014, the band and four fans sued the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case has been stalled there for years, getting kicked out, victorious on appeal, then kicked out again.

The fanatic fans are "forming more organized subsets and engaging in more gang-like criminal activity".

Assembling near the Lincoln Memorial, the "Juggalos", as they are known, spoke of the difficulties they have faced since the law enforcement agency's decision: Losing jobs, custody of their children, and excessive police attention.

"We are taking out [sic] fight to the streets. It's not a left or right rally", the group's website says.

"Crimes committed by Juggalos are sporadic, disorganized, individualistic, and often involve simple assault, personal drug use and possession, petty theft, and vandalism".

By the accounts of reporters from NPR and WAMUpresent on the National Mall, the crowds at all three events were enthusiastic but modest in size.

The introduction of the third event was seen as potentially adding fuel to an already combustible mix - though apart from a brief interruption of the pro-Trump rally by Black Lives Matter activists all three demonstrations came off without major incident. However, based on accounts from the scene, that rally turned out to be something of a dud. One in Wisconsin involved a woman's finger being chopped off.

Other reports by iNewsToday