Well, fuck. According to Right Wing Watch clowns are now a symbol of White Nationalism and racism.
Either way, this is no laughing matter – giant, monstrous clowns are going to destroy the world! And that’s not the Rachel Maddow/Don Lemon crowd talking, it’s straight outta the Eddas:
Sails a ship from the east with shades from Hel;
O’er the ocean stream steers it Loki;
In the wake of the Wolf rush fífils megir
Who with baleful Byleist’s brother do fare.
As scholar Randi Eldevik explains in Less than Kind: Giants in Germanic Tradition:
The only attested meaning of the Old Norse word fífil is ‘fool, clown, boor.’ Yet in England, the closely-related Anglo-Saxon word fifel appears exclusively with the meaning of ‘monster.’ In Beowulf, line 104, Grendel’s home is called fifelcynnes eard [land of monster-kin].
Randi goes on to connect the word to “swollen”, “voracious”, and “fond of wine, drunken” – attributes encountered equally among clowns and monsters in my experience.
But Nazism? Not so much. They’re far more likely to be into anarcho-libertarianism.