The Fear of the Freak Show


Abigail Miller

Coulrophobia, the fear of clowns, is a phobia afflicting adults. Despite that, clowns have been known to entice a crowd of circus goers with their silly antics–until now. Reports of people dressed as clowns lurking around neighborhoods, peering into windows, threatening children and even having schools put on lock-down have taken the media by storm.

This so called “national pandemic” has spread the fear of clowns into the hearts of homes everywhere. It makes one question the validity of these reports. According to USA Today, two people in Georgia were arrested for making fake reports of creepy clown sightings, and who’s to say there aren’t more fake reports out there?

In all honesty, the whole clown thing probably started out as a few thrill-seekers looking for some fun and took off from there. Movies like “It,” “Blood Harvest” and “Killer Clowns from Outer Space” have been portraying clowns in murderous ways for years. These people have probably seen movies like these and decided to take their creepy clown obsession a little too far. How else then but by mimicry have scary clowns been able to spread throughout the planet? One person winds up on the news for dressing up in a costume that you can buy at your local Spirit Halloween store, so five other people decide to do the same until it reaches the magnitude it is now.

The clown epidemic this year started with the first sighting in Greenville, South Carolina. The Guardian reported that patient zero, so to speak, was a little boy who ran and told his mother, Donna Arnold. The details of the report are vague as to where the boy was going, but it made sure to include a clear description of the clowns. One of these clowns was wearing a red fright wig, and the other had a star on it’s face–both dressed to the nines in clown garb.

Personally, I am not afraid of these losers in clown costumes. Yes, I am going to carry something to protect myself, but who wouldn’t? If you feel like you can conquer the world by hiding behind a clown costume, kudos to you. It’s not a smart idea to go around inducing panic, because that can get you arrested, like the clown that was sighted in a section of woods near Middlesboro, Kentucky. Local TV station WATE reports that he was arrested for wearing a mask in a public place and disorderly conduct.

If you want to wear a clown costume and freak out kids so bad, go join the circus, they do that on a daily basis, unintentionally of course, and you won’t be cluttering up the news when we have more serious issues to take care of.