Stop clowning around before someone gets hurt

Ever since this past August, all across the United States and even in Britain, there have been a growing amount of incidents involving scary clowns.  These incidents started in Greenville, South Carolina and have been seen by many as just some elaborate prank that people came up with just to be funny.  In a way, I believe this theory may have been correct, but I believe this has grown to be something more dangerous.  Lately these incidents have been turning into attacks, with some people now getting stabbed or severely injured in some way.

        States ranging from California. to Georgia, to Wisconsin and even up north in areas like Maine, Vermont and New York have experienced these attacks.  By now more than half of the country has been effected.  

        I believe these incidents may have started as an elaborate prank as some theorists have thought.  People were probably just influenced by the recent use of clowns or scary clown masks in frightening TV series like “American Horror Story: Freak Show.”  In this show, one of the villains is a deranged clown named Twisty who enjoys torturing his victims before killing them.  Another influence may be the “The Purge” series in which every year for one night, all crime is allowed in a dystopian United States of America, including murder.  It is a purge of all bad emotions in one night.  Many of the characters in these movies wear masks to avoid being identified during the purge.  The last influence I can think of is the recent comeback of Stephen King’s novel “It”, in which a demon, disguised as the infamous Pennywise the Clown, attempts to murder innocent children through means of luring them in with persuasion tactics.  It is also a possibility that this could just be a bad case of people acting like fools, thinking they can get away with  scaring people.

        These pranks could, however, escalate further if the problem is not dealt with.  The problem we are having is that the police are not catching all of these clowns and they are constantly escaping with more victims left in their wake.  These people seem to be very elusive.  Some people have even been chased and stabbed or threatened with kidnapping by these strange characters while walking around at night.

        People believe they can get away with almost anything and they are getting more and more violent.  People have been misusing the clown mask as something frightening for years now, taking advantage of certain people’s fear of clowns.  This is where I figured out where the influences for these incidents may have stemmed from.  People may be mixing the clown killer aspects of “It” and “American Horror Story: Freak Show” and the senseless attacking aspects of “The Purge” series, and making their own style of crime to throw into this world. I cannot find a legitimate reason for these incidents and cannot find a reasonable answer for these people’s actions except that they watch too many horror movies and believe they can imitate them.  Maybe this is why we do not show gruesome horror movies to children so they will not turn out like this with a twisted sense of humor.

        Contrary to what these people dressed as clowns think, these attacks are no laughing matter and are striking fear into many citizens across the country, in some cases other countries as well.  This idea may have started as an idiotic prank, but this is going too far.  It is as if these people are trying bring the gruesome acts we see on TV to life. They started off in South Carolina just scaring people at night with creepy costumes but now are attacking people and making threats of kidnapping. Examples of attacks have already been seen in Reading, Pennsylvania, where a 16-year-old was fatally stabbed by a man in a clown mask.  Another example of an attack was in Colorado Springs when a man allegedly obtained deep head wounds from a person wearing a clown costume. The wound was so severe that he had to get stitches to reattach his ear.  Threats of school attacks and kidnappings have been seen in states like Wisconsin, Missouri and Texas as well as many others.  This is a prank that has gone too far and needs to stop.  The attention given to these “clowns” has even spread to other countries such as Britain.  Recently in Britain, a man in a clown outfit threw a sharp stick at a 17-year-old boy’s head.  If we are not too careful, this problem could grow to worldwide proportions.  On social media, people are now starting rumors about these clowns and, in my opinion, are just giving these pranksters what they want, attention.  A startling rumor I heard recently is that these “clowns” are planning a purge right before Halloween as a means to copy  “The Purge.”  As stated above, I do not believe these rumors but what I do believe is that this problem needs to be handled before it really does go too far.  We cannot ignore the problem forever, especially since that is what the media is saying while these attacks keep happening.  Telling people to not wear masks and to ignore the clown sightings will solve nothing.  This a call to action. People may be at risk.

Jonathan Joyner