TUCSON, Ariz. — A "Clown Lives Matter" march has been scheduled in Tucson in response to the social-media frenzy about creepy clowns in Arizona and other parts of the country.
According to a flier posted on Facebook by Nikki Sinn, the "peaceful walk" will take place at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 15 on Fourth Avenue in Tucson.
"This is a peaceful walk to show clowns are not psycho killers. We want the public to feel safe and not be afraid. So come out, bring the family, meet a clown and get a hug!" the flier said.
Participants were invited to wear full clown makeup or masks, the flier said.
Sinn, the organizer of the march, was not immediately available for comment.
This walk comes in the midst of a social media-propelled trend about people dressed as clowns looking to harm others, primarily on or near school campuses around the nation.
In Arizona, there have been clown sightings at the University of Arizona and threats made onPhoenix and Mesa schools. The "creepy clown" threats were found to be unsubstantiated, police said, but five teenagers have been detained on suspicion of being behind the threats.
"Because the clown story is traveling by social media, it is fast and furious. It propagates easily. It moves faster and faster, and it takes hold in communities of people and becomes fashionable," said Catherine F. Brooks, the director of UA's Center for Digital Society and Data Studies.
The Rev. Reginald Walton, chairman of the Arizona Black Lives Matter campaign, told The Republic that the rally's name is "insensitive."
"The recent events in this country involving clowns has gripped the nation and caused an epidemic of fear," Walton said. "The notion of a Clown Lives Matter rally is insensitive, as the issue of police brutality and violence is a serious issue and the clown issue is not as important.
"The Clown Lives Matter rally takes away the focus of a serious issue in this country that we are working with law enforcement and the community to resolve."