Everything You've Been Too Afraid To Ask About Juggalos

What are juggalos? You may not know, but they’re down with the clown, down for life yo. Simply put, juggalos are fans of the horrorcore group Insane Clown Posse. They’re ultra sincere people of all ages and all walks of life who are widely mocked in popular culture for just enjoying a thing. Maybe the mockery comes from a lack of understanding of what juggalos really are. Most people only know about the juggalo attacks, and the annual chaos that comes with the Gathering of the Juggalos. So what does it mean to be a juggalo? Do you have to paint your face? Do you really have to drink Faygo? Keep reading to discover everything you want to know about juggalos.

As far as underground cultures go, juggalos are fairly inclusive to outsiders. They’re a fun loving bunch that’s into super scary rap, and face paint, but is there anything deeper to the juggalos? These juggalo lifestyle facts are going to clear up a lot of misnomers about juggalos, a maligned group of people who shot to the top of the cultural zeitgeist after the FBI singled them out as one of America’s new top gangs. Make sure to slap on your face paint, and pour yourself a glass of Faygo before reading these facts about juggalos. Whopp whoop.

Photo: Metaweb / CC-BY

  • How Did They Beat Facial Recognition Technology?


    In late June 2018, Twitter user @tahkion made the discovery that Juggalo makeup obscures the face enough to confuse facial recognition technology. While the Juggalos most likely did not do this on purpose  – the Juggalo face paint was inspired by the 1992 song "The Juggla," whereas the commercial facial recognition technology familiar today really took off in 2011 – it is an interesting side effect of the makeup. 

    The particular style in which Juggalos paint their faces, specifically their placement of a black line underneath the jaw, makes it easy for the technology to mistake the location of a person's jaw

  • Are All Juggalos Poor?

    Are All Juggalos Poor?
    Photo: YouTube

    Unfortunately, there hasn’t been a study on the average income of a juggalo, but to lump all juggalos into the lowest tax bracket simply because they like the music of ICP isn’t fair. However, the two men that make up Insane Clown Posse, Shaggy 2 Dope and Violent J, are both open about their adolescence, and the face that they grew up destitute in suburban Michigan. The group’s admittance of being poor for most of their lives obviously strikes a chord within juggalos, who are mostly working class, and live in rural areas.

  • Are They All Caucasian?

    Are They All Caucasian?
    Photo: YouTube

    Watch any footage from the Gathering of the Juggalos, or an ICP concert, and you’ll see an overwhelming amount of Caucasian faces. However, ICP and the juggalos have made it a point to let people know that anyone who’s down with the clown has a place at the table. Kevin Gill, a man who spoke at the Juggalo March on Washington put it best in a speech that he delivered to a lively juggalo crowd: “We made the name ‘Juggalo’ to represent all of us, men, women, black, white, Black, yellow, fat as f*ck, skinny as a broomstick, gay, straight, bi, trans, young, old and folded and loopy, rich, poor.”

  • What’s Up With The “Whoop Whoop” Chant?

    What’s Up With The “Whoop Whoop” Chant?
    Photo: YouTube

    If you’ve ever been in a close proximity with juggalos, or watched footage any kind of juggalo gathering you’ve no doubt heard the immortal words, “whoop whoop,” but what does that even mean? At its core “whoop whoop” sounds like an innocuous chant, but the fact that its managed to cement itself in the very bedrock of the juggalo lexicon means that there has to be some kind of deeper meaning, right?

    In the Detroit Metro Times column, “Ask A Juggalo,” Will Sigler – a 36 year old juggalo who works at Psychopathic Records, the label run by ICP – finally answers what “whoop whoop” really means. He says that “whoop whoop” is mostly used as a form of farewell, and that it’s used similarly to how Marines use the “ooh rah” chant. “[Whoop whoop is] an easy thing to say, it's fun to say, and it can mean everything or nothing. And it sounds just the same, whether you're drunk or sober. And even sometimes when you're sad, you can say, like, 'Whoop whoop, man.'"


  • Why Was There A Juggalo March On Washington?

    Why Was There A Juggalo March On Washington?
    Photo: YouTube

    In 2011 an FBI report on gang culture in the US was released, and it classified juggalos as a “loosely organized hybrid gang.” The ACLU said that the FBI’s rhetoric violated the free speech of juggalos, and in 2012 ICP sued the FBIBut what does it really mean to have your subculture listed as a gang? Because the FBI declared juggalos to be a “hybrid gang,” that now gives law enforcement probable cause to stop anyone displaying any kind ICP merchandise. This applies to Hatchetman stickers on cars, ICP tattoos, and even Hatchet Gear (the clothing company owned by ICP). This can lead to drug arrests, job and custody loss simply because someone identifies as a juggalo.

    To put it simply, the march was a peaceful protest against the baseless qualification of juggalos as gang members. As with any large group of people, there are certainly bad apples, but that doesn’t mean that everyone with a Hatchetman tattoo is a terrible person.

  • The Family Chant

    The Family Chant
    Photo: YouTube

    Aside from “whoop whoop,” one of the things that you’ll hear ad nauseum in the company of juggalos is the chant of “FAM-I-LY,” so what are they talking about? Every juggalo has a different personal definition of family, but they all center around the idea that they may have been born to a specific group of biological parents, but their real family are the fans of Insane Clown Posse. Noisey writer Benamin Shapiro interviewed juggalos at the Gathering of the Juggalos in 2012 to see what they meant when they chanted family, and all of their answers mentioned a certain quality that was impossible to verbalize. A juggalo named Robert said that family meant that if you saw “a Juggalo on the ground, you pick that b*tch up.” Another Juggalo, Michael, explained: “This is a different type of family from your home. This is just like friendly sh*t. I'm down two or three dollars, can I get some? Not too many other people would do that, feed one another, help one another. Even your own family, who knows.”