October is inarguably one of the greatest months of the year. It is a month filled with pumpkin carving, corn mazes, sweater weather, and lots of good, old-fashioned family fun. One of the most beloved and highly anticipated activities of October falls on the very last day of the month and celebrates the secular holiday of All Hallow’s Eve, or Halloween. In America, Halloween has become a day when it is socially acceptable to dress up in wacky costumes, without judgement, and hoard candy like squirrels for the coming winter. However, Halloween has decided to come a bit early this year, and it is anything but fun and festive.

In early September, police began receiving reports of “creepy clown” sightings on the outskirts of Greenville, South Carolina. Many incidents were reported in this area, involving these grotesquely dressed clowns attempting to lure women and children into the woods using candy and other enticing items. The Greenville Police looked into these cases, but no arrests were made. At first, these reports seemed like freak occurrences, and many assumed it was just a couple of teenagers with nothing better to do. Everyone expected the stories and occurrences to fizzle out within a week, but the opposite occurred.

Fast forward to present day, and a grand total of ten states, predominantly in the Northeast and South, have reported the existence of these clowns and the fear they are evoking within the citizens of these areas. Social media has been erupting with proof of this rapidly evolving trend. Numerous videos on almost every social media platform depicts these daunting characters and the crazy behaviors they attempt. Just a few of these behaviors include chasing people through the streets, jumping onto cars, and even wielding knives and other dangerous weapons.

This perverted trend shows no sign of slowing down, and it is becoming increasingly harder to distinguish between those who wish to do harm to others and those who simply want to have a good laugh. In many college towns across the nation, these clown sightings have become heavily prevalent due to foolish college students who find it humorous to terrorize their fellow classmates. Several threats have been made to many high schools and universities across the nation, threatening to inflict harm on the students if these said institutions do not comply with the clowns’ wishes. Fortunately, many of these claims have been declared false. They were simply pranks from these immature young adults who do not have the decency to act like civilized human beings.

As the level of fear on this issue grows, many people have attempted to take matters into their own hands. The student body of Pennsylvania State organized a college-wide clown hunt after reports of a clown sighting nearby was announced. The hunt could be viewed via a national Snapchat story designed specifically for the event. In other instances, people have engaged in outright brawls with clowns that they have seen standing eerily on the side of the road. Despite these instances, it does not appear that many people have sustained injuries due to contact with clowns. Nevertheless, these occurrences are frightening, and they need to stop. Police forces across the nation are beginning to arrest anyone dressed in a clown costume who appears to be up to no good.

I would like to take this time to point out that Coulraphobia is a real thing. Coulraphobia is defined as the irrational fear of clowns, but it seems to me that the fear many states are experiencing is in every way rational. To anyone who finds pleasure dressing up as a clown and terrorizing innocent people, I am highly disappointed in your morals and values, and I suggest you reassess them. During such a critical time in our nation’s existence, it would benefit us to stand together as one instead of trying to rip ourselves apart from the inside. This creepy clown invasion is absurd and utterly terrifying. I sincerely hope the end is near, and in the meantime, I urge you to stay incredibly safe as Halloween steadily approaches.

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