The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Editorial- Clown attacks grow as joke taken too far

The latest 15-minutes-of-fame fad is sweeping the nation, and this time it’s dangerous.

Katelyn Needham/The Collegian
Katelyn Needham/The Collegian

Clowns have inspired many a mixed feeling from groups of children. Some find them endearing and funny, but many are simply afraid of them.

The new get-famous-quick fad is dressing up as a clown and going around to assault people.

MSNBC has reported at least two clown attacks in a town north of Detroit. Another clown assault was reported at Texas State University in San Marcos. More clown threats have popped up in Denton, Southlake and Keller. Police have investigated these threats but believe most of them to be pranks.

This is dangerous, more so for the clowns than anyone else. Americans have the right to bear arms, and many American citizens exercise this right.

YouTube has a plethora of people whose sole purpose in life is pranking unsuspecting victims while on camera. The phrase “It’s just a prank, bro” comes to mind when these imbeciles try to justify their actions to which the party on the receiving end of the prank responds, “It’s just a punch in the face, bro” or “It’s just pepper spray, bro.” More seriously, citizens serious about defending themselves will defend themselves.

An Amarillo TV station reported a homeowner fired a warning shot at two clowns on his property after telling them to leave. While firearms should be used only when one’s life is being threatened, clowns in grotesque makeup acting weird at night are now what many people would describe as threatening behavior.

Harmless pranks are in shorter supply these days as the need for bigger thrills pushes those lacking in a certain amount of empathy to use their fellow human beings like toys for their own entertainment.

The modern harmless prank involves a good amount of distance and a layer of solid matter between the pranker and the pranked. For example, a recent drive-thru prank makes it look like a skeleton is driving a car to order a Big Mac or the driver wears a seat to make it appear as though no one is driving at all.

This prank causes a commotion for the good employees of those fast-food chains, but by the end of the prank, everyone is laughing, and no one ends up hurt.

These harmless pranks are in short supply when compared to the people who pretend to damage other’s property for a prank or do anything involving a bathroom and bodily fluids, fake or not. How many prank-gone-wrong videos featuring immature adult children being stupid do the people perpetuating the clown epidemic need to watch before figuring out this is a bad idea?

Walking around in scary costumes is nothing new around October, but the degree to which it’s being taken with the clowns is dangerous, not only for themselves but those they’re trying to scare. In the case of clowns assaulting people, someone could easily be hurt when it gets out of hand. Fear can make people do some irrational things from running through traffic to escape a clown to taking defensive actions causing severe injury or death.

For your own safety, and the safety of others, take off the mask. Find something to do that ends with all parties laughing and with no chance of either party being harmed. Why not make a cake prank in which someone receives large numbers of cakes that they can’t eat on their own? At least then the only injured party will be the receiver’s diet.

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