The Brief: Juggalos are fans of the music group Insane Clown Posse.
Juggalo is a name for people who stan the hip hop group Insane Clown Posse (ICP). They are known for their clown-like makeup and zealous devotion to ICP. The name comes from the 1992 ICP song, “The Juggla.“
According to a 2010 article published in Wired Magazine, the majority of Juggalos are young white men from working-class backgrounds. Female Juggalos are known as Juggalettes.
ICP consists of the duo Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope. Founded in 1989 in Detroit, ICP has referred to themselves as “the most hated band in the world.” Violent J and Shaggy 2 Dope perform and shoot music videos in their signature clown makeup. ICP’s song lyrics often address issues of abuse and poverty.
In 2011, the U.S. Justice Department and FBI labeled the group as a “loosely organized hybrid gang,” causing ICP to sue in response, noting among other things that the FBI report cited only cited two crimes that two Juggalo-affiliated individuals were involved in.
The Juggalos are not a criminal organization, but a group of people with a shared affinity for a music group. Each year, there are gatherings and meetups for Juggalos. They have also congregated to protest how they are often villainized by mainstream society.
For many Juggalos, being a part of the group is about more than just clown face paint. It means affiliating themselves with an identity, a culture, and a family-like community.