From the Irish Times:
A small town in southern France has banned people from wearing clown costumes in the street, especially on Halloween.
The decision by mayor Pierre Dudieuzere, of Vendargues, near Montpelier, follows a series of incidents around France in which people dressed as scary clowns spooked children and in several cases assaulted people.
In one incident, an adolescent assaulted a passerby with an iron bar.
The phenomenon has spread on Facebook during the past few weeks, with groups tracking clown sightings across the country.
But Vendargues, with 6,000 inhabitants, is apparently the first town to ban clowning around.
The ruling, posted on the town’s website, said the ban is “absolute” tonight, Halloween, and will be in force throughout November for everyone aged 13 and older.
Regular listeners to The Teri O’Brien Show know how I feel about clowns, as in YIKES!!!
In last week’s Subscriber Show Notes, which those who make a monthly gift to help us keep the lights on receive, we had another story about a couple of knuckleheads dressed up as clowns attacking a woman and her kids with sex toys. Clowns with Sex Toys–an AWESOME name for a band, no?
According to the Washington Post,
“Democrats are nearly twice as likely as Republicans to have a fear of clowns. They are also significantly more likely to fear bugs, snakes and other animals, as well as blood and needles. Democrats are slightly more likely to be afraid of ghosts. …Perhaps due partly to their belief in the unbelievable, Democrats tend to be more phobia-stricken than Republicans, according to the survey. Chapman researchers asked about a dozen different phobias, ranging across everything from public speaking to zombies. On a number of questions, Democrats were more fearful than Republicans. But Republicans weren’t significantly more fearful on any of them. …
The partisan differences can be traced partly education, according to Christopher D. Bader, a sociology professor at Chapman. “Having a lower level of education, particularly having only a high school diploma/GED or less, was the most consistent predictor of fear,” he wrote in analysis. In an email, he added “Democrats tend to be slightly less educated than Republicans in our sample (emphasis mine). Therefore, this might explain some of the difference.”
(You should go to the WaPo article just to see the scary photo illustrating it, but don’t say I didn’t warn you if you have nightmares.)
But even if you are well-educated, it’s perfectly reasonable to be afraid of clowns.