Primark has been forced to remove a Walking Dead-themed T-shirt from its stores after a shopper branded it “racist”.
Ian Lucraft and his wife Gwen came across the shirt which reads “eeny meny miny moe”, and features a picture of a bloodied, barbed wire-wrapped baseball bat, while shopping for a present for their grandson in Primark’s new Sheffield store in The Moor shopping centre.
Mr Lucraft says he and his wife were both shocked by the “fantastically offensive” shirt, and immediately complained to a store worker about it.
He told The Scotsman: “The slogan is, ‘Eeeny meenie miny moe….’. It stops there, but of course we all know what the original said, ‘catch a n***** by his toe’.
“The graphic has a large American baseball bat, wrapped round with barbed wire, and covered with blood. This image relates directly to the practice of assaulting black people in America.
“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.”
The phrase “Eeny meenie miny moe” is used by the character Negan in zombie apocalypse show The Walking Dead while he is battering another character to death with a bat like the one on the T-shirt.
Negan does not use the N-word in the show – he says “tiger” instead. The “eeny meenie miny moe” saying comes from a children’s rhyme which is used to decide who will be “on it” in playground games like tag.
A Primark spokesman said that the T-shirt is official Walking Dead merchandise, adding: “Any offence caused by its design was wholly unintentional and Primark sincerely apologises for this.”
People are split over whether the T-shirt is actually offensive or not, with some arguing it lacks the context of obviously being labelled a Walking Dead shirt.
But some fans of the show are up in arms about Primark’s decision to pull them from its stores.
1 - The Primark T-Shirt doesn't even say The Walking Dead on the front, it's just violent imagery paired with a racial taunt - bad design— blender. (@cheyennelouiseb) February 21, 2017
Primark are currently in the process of removing all the T-shirts from its stores.