Stop clowning around

Kristen Davis '17

Kristen Davis ’17

The clown phenomenon is sweeping the nation, taking over social media platforms, and provoking violence within educational institutions. Although the clown was once a symbol of happiness and joviality, these supposed pranks now destroy the integrity of the original image and intensify the nationwide clown delirium. 
The original stalker clown, known as the Northampton Clown, became a worldwide sensation in 2013. Locals spotted and photographed the clown holding balloons in the British town of Northampton. The Daily Mirror unmasked the clown as Northampton University ­student and filmmaker Mr. Alex Powell, who also created the popular “Spot Northampton’s Clown” Facebook page, according to theweek.com. Mr. Powell facilitated the rise of the creepy clown character toward viral phenomenon.
The heightened clown frenzy began in the United States this year when parents reported creepy clowns luring children into the woods in Greenville, South Carolina August 21, according to The New York Times. Ever since, the public has reported creepy clown sightings on college campuses and towns across the United States.  
Although some teenagers use clown costumes to perform seemingly harmless pranks, it has caused a spiral of terror and a great deal of commotion in people’s lives and ultimately needs to be stopped.
Recently, police have spent more time hunting creepy clown sightings rather than pursuing more heinous crimes. As a result, children and adults are too frightened to leave their houses, and mobs of college students are violently retaliating against these clowns.

Kristen Davis '17
Kristen Davis ’17

Additionally, social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, encourage the clown hysteria. Many people enjoy reading the latest stories, watching the newest videos, and posting updates about clowns. The excessive comments, tweets, and reactions have led to an exponential rise of violent clown incidents.
Rather than using social media as a tool to augment the dark side of human behavior, students should utilize their media accounts to positively influence the public’s judgment. Contributing intellectual and rational messages will control the clown hysteria.
It is time to stop giving attention to the clown craze. As a result of the frenzy, the fearful clown figure continues to damage the original joy of this otherwise comical symbol. If everyone ignores such negative commentary, the public’s preoccupation with these clowns will subside, and social media can be used in a more positive and productive manner.
– Kristen Davis, Content Editor