Primark has pulled a run of The Walking Dead t-shirts after receiving complaints that they were offensive and racist.
The item of clothing in question depicts a bloody baseball bat wrapped in barbed wire featuring the phrase ‘Eeny, Meeny Miny, Moe’. The shirt references the instense season six finale which saw Negan select a character to kill by using the rhyme.
But after Sheffield couple Ian and Gwen Lucraft spotted the shirt in Primark, they complained to bosses that it was ‘offensive’.
Primark has had to pull this Tshirt from its stores cos it was deemed offensive and Racist..
Hmmmmm I don't see it.. ? pic.twitter.com/N6Nx29WDLS
— Wale Gates ???? (@walegates) February 21, 2017
Methodist minister Ian Lucraft pointed out that the counting rhyme – which has been used since the 18th century – originally ended in ‘catch a n****r by his toe’.
The word ‘tiger’ has since replaced the racial slur in modernised versions, but Lucraft claimed the phrase featured on the shirt could easily be mistaken for the one used in racist attacks.
We were shocked when we came face to face with a new t-shirt with a racially explicit graphic and text.
It was fantastically offensive and I can only assume that no-one in the process of ordering it knew what they were doing or were aware of its subliminal messages.
He added that the image ‘…relates directly to the practice of assaulting black people in America,’ and said: “It is directly threatening of a racist assault, and if I were black and were faced by a wearer I would know just where I stood.”
But not everyone agrees:
— Kim Kimmi Hyndes (@Kim_KimmiH) February 21, 2017
— Az (@AdamCJMcLean) February 21, 2017
— Tia Sharp (@DitzyDoryUK) February 21, 2017
Despite the uproar, Primark bosses have decided to keep the t-shirt removed from its stores.
A spokesman for the chain said:
The t-shirt in question is licensed merchandise for the U.S. television series, The Walking Dead, and the quote and image are taken directly from the show. Any offence caused by its design was wholly unintentional and Primark sincerely apologises for this.
Following the announcement, Lucraft told The Sheffield Star he was ‘very pleased’ the range had been pulled from the store.