Tom Morello performs at National Nurses United rally in Daley Plaza
By Rebecca Zborowski
In the sea of red-clad nurses wearing felt Robin Hood hats in Daley Plaza Friday were a motley collection of clowns, coneheads, anarchists and Occupiers wearing all black despite the beating sun.
Demonstrators came from metropolitan areas across the country like New York and Miami, and many were visiting from Europe and from around the globe to protest what they perceive as the war crimes of NATO and the injustices perpetuated by the U.S. government.
Some of the demonstrating nurses donned full Robin Hood regalia and held handwritten signs declaring NATO “evil” and the country’s current healthcare system unethical. “Wall Street got bailed out, we got sold out” was a circulating National Nurses United slogan.
Those affiliated with ClownBloq added diversity to the dizzying mass of red. A woman covered in pale, corpse-like makeup and bandages wore a sign on her chest that said, “I gave myself this operation,” a reference to the broken healthcare system in the U.S. A pair of cheerful middle-aged men wore cone prosthetics on their balding pates and t-shirts with “paddling up shit creek” slogans.
Perhaps the most obscure offshoot of the protester organizations was “Occupy Juggalos,” a group of Occupy Wall Street-aligned “Juggalos,” the name designated globally to hardcore fans of cult rap-metal outfit Insane Clown Posse.
Justin Kramer and Russell Powell, from Chicago and Miami respectively, represented this group in gothic clown makeup and the words “Juggalo” and the “f” word written on their arms and faces in block letters with Sharpie. Though their black makeup made them look suspect, both were emphatically denying any goal to be violent or disruptive
“We can get rowdy, but Juggalos are not all violent,” said Kramer, 22, as Powell silently stared and blew smoke.
“We’re not a gang,” added Powell, also 22. “We’re just showing our originality and not conforming like the government.”