Juggalos, ACLU Team Up Against the Feds

In the news today:

Not an actual Juggalo.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, along with the Detroit music duo Insane Clown Posse (ICP), filed a federal lawsuit today on behalf of Juggalos, or fans of ICP, claiming that their constitutional rights to expression and association were violated when the U.S. government wrongly and arbitrarily classified the entire fan base as a "hybrid" criminal gang.

It's true: The feds have classified the Juggalos as a gang. The designation was made in a 2011 FBI report, which included such immortal lines as "Juggalos are traditionally fans of the musical group the Insane Clown Posse." (As I wrote at the time, I'd love to learn more about those non-traditional Juggalos who are not fans of Insane Clown Posse.) The duo announced last year that it planned to sue the agency, and now it's happening.

The band is joined in its suit by four individual Juggalos, three of whom say cops have profiled them for their fan identity. For example:

Mark Parsons considers himself one of the original fans of ICP, having attended shows and supported the band for years. In honor of the band, Mark named his own trucking company Juggalo Express, LLC and decorated his big rig with the image of a Hatchetman.

While Mark was hauling cargo in a tractor-trailer emblazoned with an ICP logo, he was detained for a safety inspection by a Tennessee State Trooper. When Mark asked why he was stopped, the Trooper replied it was because the logo was associated with a gang "according to the FBI." This inspection delayed Mark's cargo for over an hour.

The plaintiffs want the government to remove ICP fans from the gang list. You can read their complaint here. For more examples of subcultures that got mistaken for conspiracies, go here.

Bonus link: Another sort of Juggalo justice.

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  • Citizen Nothing||

    It's not a gang, it's a club.

  • Paul.||

    Right, like the Hell's Angels Motorcycle Club.

  • rts||

  • SugarFree||

  • dinkster||

    I'm more of a Dr. Rockso fella.

  • Irish||

    Water, fire, air and dirt, fucking lawsuits how do they work?

    And I don't want to talk to law theorist, ya'll motherfuckers lyin' and gettin' me pissed.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Fucking profiling, how does it work?

  • BardMetal||

    Well now I'm torn. I don't like the government, but I also consider Juggalos to be the lowest form of human life.

  • Brett L||

    Nah. The Juggalos are just hurting themselves, the government is out to hurt everyone for their own good.

  • Paul.||

    We are all Juggalos now.

  • UnCivilServant||

    No.

  • Mint Berry Crunch||

    In honor of the band, Mark named his own trucking company Juggalo Express, LLC and decorated his big rig with the image of a Hatchetman.

    This guy is definitely Down With the Clown.

  • Sigivald||

    "... many Juggalos subsets exhibit gang-like behavior and engage in
    criminal activity and violence."

    This - from the FBI report - does not seem entirely inaccurate, as stated.

    The only issue I can see is the lack of distinction between "Juggalo as self-identified ICP fan with Bad Life Decisions around wearing clown makeup" and "Juggalo as someone as above, and also a petty criminal who works with other Juggalos, because that's their social group"; the implication that every douche with a hatchet-man sticker on his car is a gang member would seem unsupportable.

    Some Juggalos are indistinguishable from a gang; most of them are just, well, idiots.

    (Some of them are neither, but frankly I'm going to take self-identifying as a Juggalo as an indicator of Serious Issues.

    One can like ICP with only questionable musical taste; Being A Juggalo is a whole other can of clown makeup.)

  • Malkavian||

    It's true: The feds have classified the Juggalos as a gang.

    If being stupid and having questionable musical tastes can affiliate you with a gang, what about all those political party fundraisers? Are they going to pull over people with Democrat bumper stickers coming out of Barbra Streisand concerts?

  • JeremyR||

    I think the non-traditional ones are confused KISS fans

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