Why the Insane Clown Posse, and its Juggalo fans, are marching in DC

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) - We're used to marches and rallies in D.C. But this weekend will be little different in our nation's capital.

Fans of the rap-rock group the Insane Clown Posse will be demonstrating on the National Mall. They're protesting the FBI for classifying them as a hybrid gang.

Unrelated to ICP, there also will be an alt-right gathering called 'The Mother of All Rallies' -- and a counter protest to that.

So, what is the Insane Clown Posse?

The Insane Clown Posse is a music group. Their fans are called juggalos and juggalettes. Juggalos say ICP is about more than the music. Some say it’s a subculture.

They’re planning a political rally at the Lincoln Memorial on Saturday. Expect about 3,000 of them to participate.

The Insane Clown Posse is known for huge and rowdy annual gatherings with carnival-like themes. In their information video for marchers though, they’re making it clear—this is a serious march, not a time to party.

They tell marchers, "Don’t give them what they want. Don't be drunk. Don’t be belligerent."

PREVIOUS: 'March to Confront White Supremacy' ends in DC

Why did the FBI call them a gang?

The group and their fans were labeled a hybrid gang by the FBI in 2011—that’s a gang that forms along racial and cultural lines. The FBI found that in four states the fans were loosely organized, but expanding. However, they haven’t made that designation in years since.

There was a string of crimes by fans with ICP tattoos. The music group said it never endorsed or had any role to play in that violence.

Why should people care about the Insane Clown Posse’s problems?

The music group said it’s a freedom of speech issue.

They said the gang designation has done a lot of damage to their fans. They said it unfairly painted their music and fans as violent. One woman lost her job in a corrections facility for posting fan pictures on Facebook. Others have have been hassled by police.

The group said local governments aren’t letting them have permits to book venues for their events.

They called it a form of discrimination based on musical taste—and even if your tastes might be different—it’s something they’re marching to change.

 

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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