Target has decided to pull large portions of their clown inventory from the shelves over the continued hysteria of reported clown attacks happening across the country.
The Washington Post reports the takedown may have quietly happened in the recent weeks following the attacks, but the announcement was officially made Monday (Oct. 16). “Given the current environment, we have made the decision to remove a variety of clown masks from our assortment, both in stores and online,” the company’s spokesperson said in an email. More than likely, the company isn’t interested in pranksters using their masks to troll the masses.
A combination of real and fake clown attacks grew to popularity on social media, with The White House even making a comment on the craze. “Obviously, this is a situation that local law enforcement authorities take quite seriously,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said earlier this month. “And they should carefully and thoroughly review perceived threats to the safety of the community, and they should do so prudently.”
Professional clowns have taken offense to those in on the craze as well. A woman from Tuscon, AZ organized a “Clown Lives Matter” rally for this month but was postponed over death threats made on the groups’ Facebook page.
For now, Target has continued to sell sexy clown outfits and lighthearted costumes for children. Other companies are cashing in on the craze. Costume retailer Halloween Express told reporters their online sales of “evil” or “scary” clown masks have risen over 300 percent. “As to why we’re selling more clown masks this year than last, I could speculate but frankly my opinion doesn’t matter,” Brad Butler, head of the company’s online e-commerce said. “Truth is, I don’t know.”