It appears that children, stuck in a hospital are not the only ones to suffer the torture of clowns; they’ve now moved on to refugees. As was reported, a troupe of clowns from the group, ‘Payasos Sin Fronteras‘ (Clowns Without Borders), has apparently been covertly moving around DR Congo, red noses and all, “entertaining” people in refugee camps.
Okay, let me be up front. I’ve never liked clowns. I don’t find them funny. In fact, they generally scare the crap out of me and not just because of films like IT. It’s people running around in face paint, acting weird, and often dropping their pants. I never knew how that got to be acceptable behavior in modern society and if you took the face paint out of it, they’d probably be arrested in normal settings. I suppose it’s a good part of the reason I enjoyed Shakes the Clown so much as it tore open the sordid underbelly of the clowning world. Well, not really, but it make clowns out to be the terror that I find them to be.
There was always the longstanding joke that the reason clowns went to entertain children in hospitals was because the kids couldn’t run away (see, it’s not just me that’s wigged out by clowns.) It appears that after working in Syria and former Yugoslavia, these clowns have gotten wind of the refugees in the camps around Goma that, gosh darnit, need some cheering up. What they actually need is a long-term development plan, de-mining, warlords to stop being funded by greedy international mining operations, and a functional government so that these camps can be shut down someday. But, until then, we have clowns. For me, it plays a good deal in to this argument wherein, since the refugees have nothing, a few hours of slapstick comedy will obviously make things better. I’m going to lean towards the ‘not’ side of things and toss this in the rather large pile of “people not gettin’ it”. This becomes even more clear when reading their blog wherein the title is “Lo nuestro es de risa” which is an idiom best translated as “this is a joke” in that it’s not be taken seriously.
On a related yet unrelated side note, somehow I’ve managed to tie the Balkans and Africa together for two posts in a row. That just blows my mind.
There's the cruelty of war and then there are clowns