The Return of the Great 'Clown Craze'
By: C. Paixão
Picture from: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-37600319
In 2016, there were reports of individuals dressing up as evil clowns and appearing in odd places, such as close to schools and forests. Beginning in August 2016, the occurrences were reported in the United States, Canada, and later in additional countries. The initial sightings were recorded in Green Bay, Wisconsin, which proved out to be a horror movie's publicity stunt. Later, the phenomenon expanded to several more US cities and states. Clown sightings and assaults had been recorded in nearly all U.S. states, 9 of Canada's 13 provinces and territories, as well as 18 other nations. All this by the middle of October 2016.
Numerous sightings of clowns in strange or inappropriate locations have happened all around the world since 2013 before the string of spine-chilling occurrences in 2016. Social media posts and viral content sharing helped propagate the abundance of videos and pictures of these prior sightings. At the end of August 2016, multiple similar cases began to occur all around the country following the Wisconsin event. Early in October 2016, several incidents in Canada and the first happenings in the UK and Australia were recorded. Communities in Britain were described as to being "horrified," and police resources were under great pressure.
Social media websites were the hotspot for information regarding the phenomenon around this period. Randy Christensen, president of the World Clown Association, voiced his opposition to the practice of scaring people through the use of clown costumes. Circuses and other companies that deal with clowns were impacted as well. Ronald McDonald, for example, would maintain a lesser prominence as a result of the occurrences. This year, 2016, has been labeled "a terrible period to be a professional clown" by a sociologist. Sales of clown outfits in and around Glasgow, Scotland, increased significantly after the evil clown craze. Some Floridians choose to carry weapons while trick-or-treating on Halloween.
The terrifying episodes happened after police were alerted about allegations of clown dressed individuals terrifying Yeovil residents while carrying knives and bats. Police patrols were increased as a consequence, but more complaints of clowns in Somerset towns followed. As unsettling as it may seem, the clown craze has returned, and these terrifying costumed people are looming in the places we least expect them to be.
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