The Danish Clown Army

I went to a demo tonight arranged mainly by the Danish chapter of CIRCA – an abbreviation for the Clandestine Insurgent Rebel Clown Army.

The Danish chapter is called Klovnehæren which is a direct translation of “the Clown Army” and they’ve been trying to brighten the mood in Christiania, the hippie township commune of Copenhagen which has more or less been laid under siege for the past year and a half.

This has led to a series of encounters with the so-called “Blue clown army” who haven’t been to appreciative of the Christianite clowns’ goofery and pranks.

The demonstration tonight was called against “police brutality” but seemed more or less as an attempt to bait the police into hitting the protesters. Rather silly really. Yet the police played their part to break up the demonstration, surrounding the black-clad protesters (apparently a Black Bloc independent of the clown army).

It all had a rather surreal feel to it, as the middle-aged police officers in charge of the operation attempted to talk to the enraged protesters (maybe as many as a hundred), while the clowns were banging their drums and ringing their bells, one clown even playing the Imperial March on his trombone.

It was mostly for show. Both parties showing up, going through the motions, but none of them getting any wiser. There was a sense of overbearing “they-can’t-help-it” attitude among the police, and a naive, passionate frustration among the protesters. They revelled in their rebellion, grasping at the chance to shout “pigs” at the police.

I sincerely hope that it is possible to find more constructive, exciting and bold ways to vent all this idealistic passion. More on this as it develops..

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