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Clown Laws: Should Children's Entertainers be Licensed?

By Cynthia Hsu, Esq. | Last updated on

Should we license clowns? Linda Beaudoin, a former clown, is petitioning to create some new clown laws in Canada to battle child abuse.

Beaudoin has long been campaigning for laws on licensing clowns, and she has been documenting the arrest of clowns, mall Santas, and other hired child entertainers on her website.

Beaudoin has especially been paying close attention to the case of an Ontario clown Randy Miller who pled guilty to possession of child pornography. He had 60,000 illicit images of children on his computer, reports AOL News.

Now, Beaudoin has been campaigning and contacting lawmakers from both Canada and the U.S. to get laws passed that would require clowns to go through more background checks and get a license to clown, according to AOL News.

Currently, there is no legislation in the U.S. that requires clowns to get any background check or license. But, most major venues that hire clowns often require child entertainers to go through a criminal background check. The reason? To vet out people who have a history of pedophilia.

Many clowns are unregulated, hired by parents to perform at their children's birthday parties or other events through online listings or newspaper advertisements. Regulation of these clowns would be a lot tougher.

Some experts also cite to the fact that other workers that deal with a lot of children, including babysitters, do not require licenses either, according to AOL News.

So, should we have to license clowns, and create some new clown laws? Most experts seem to be divided on the issue. While it does perpetuate the stereotype that clowns are sexual predators, it may also be a step towards preventing child abuse.

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