Published: Sun, September 17, 2017
Culture | By Stewart Greene

Fans of the band Insane Clown Posse stage rally

Fans of the band Insane Clown Posse stage rally

More than 1,000 diehard fans of rap group Insane Clown Posse gathered in Washington DC on Saturday to protest the FBI's classification of them as a gang.

"A small number of Juggalos are forming more organized subsets and engaging in gang-like criminal activity such as felony assaults, thefts, robberies and drug sales", the report says.

"Specifically, you are in violation of this policy due to your posting 'pictures, images or information suggesting identification with a Security Threat Group (Juggalos) or which portray security threat group in a positive and appealing manner, ' " said the memo she got in March as she lost her job.

Brittany Penix, a 26-year-old Juggalo from IN, said she came "to prove we are not a gang".

All of those things were triggered by a tattoo, a T-shirt, a vehicle sticker or a poster that had the Insane Clown posse name or logo. "We're exhausted of being put down", she said.

Plaintiff Scott Gandy was forced to alter his Juggalo tattoo to look like a fish in order to apply to join the Army, his lawyer Saura Sahu said during a 2014 hearing. Hatchetman is a Juggalo symbol showing the silhouette of a man holding a hatchet, and it's popular on shirts and as tattoos.

The march wasn't the only one that was held in D.C. today.

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Juggalos set to march on Washington, DC on Saturday

The band say they have faced discrimination in organizing shows, meet-and-greets and their annual Gathering of the Juggalos. "What happens to Justin b-- boy Bieber's Beliebers?" In 2011, they classified Juggalos as a "loosely-organized hybrid gang" putting them in the same category as groups like the Bloods and Crips".

The band sued the Justice Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation over the gang classification in January 2014, saying it had adversely affected Juggalos. "Juggalos are a "family" of people who love and help one another, enjoy one another's company, and bond over the music and a philosophy of life", the lawsuit stated.

The move followed a string of crimes from arson to homicide that were committed by people who were identified as Juggalos over the previous five or six years.

President Donald Trump skipped town for the weekend, but that didn't stop demonstrators from making him the focus of competing rallies in the nation's capital that highlighted the stark political divisions in the United States. There was plenty of talk about the protest on Twitter, and tweets under the "Juggalo March" hashtag voiced support for them, along with the addition of a healthy dose of humor to the mix.

Afterward, the Black Lives Matters protesters left the stage peacefully, without any violence resulting from what wound up being a peaceful day overall.

"We need you and your voice to make sure that we shout above the chaos of this noisy world and are heard loudly and clearly as we deliver a message right into the nerve center of America that the Juggalo Family is not a joke, punchline, or any form of criminal organization", says the official website for the march, www.juggalomarch.com.

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