Actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan couldn’t believe that people find The Walking Dead t-shirt racist. Morgan recently aired his sentiment about the issue.
The UK department chain Primark pulled The Walking Dead t-shirt from its stores after a customer complained that the merchandise is racist and offensive. Ian Lucraft told the Sheffield Star that he was shocked when he saw the t-shirt with a racially explicit graphic and text.
The controversial shirt is emblazoned with the words “Eeny meeny miny moe” and also features Negan’s Lucille baseball bat. The words were part of Negan’s victim-selecting rhyme, “Eeny meeny miny moe, catch a tiger by the toe,” before he beat a character to death.
Primark issued a statement following its move to pull the shirt from its store shelves. The company 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 offense caused by its design was wholly unintentional and Primark sincerely apologizes for this.”
Morgan (Negan) took on Twitter to slam the complaint and Primark’s move. He tweeted:
“Holy crap people are stupid. ‘Walking Dead’ Shirt Pulled From Stores After Complaint of Racism.”
The rhyme has been in existence for about a century. The original version uses the N-word.
Eventually, it was replaced with “tiger” and has been used by children as a counting rhyme. In The Walking Dead episode where the rhyme was used, the character who sings it uses the “catch a tiger by toe” version.
Entertainment Weekly noted that the scene was part of TWD season 6 finale which was aired in April 2016. At the time, it did not raise any complaints of racism. Moreover, EW said the dialogue has been featured in Robert Kirkman’s comic for years.
Backlash on Pulling The Walking Dead T-Shirt
Morgan is not the only one who is pissed of Primark’s decision to ban the item. Some fans of The Walking Dead have objected the pull out of the garment. They accused the store of making a “panicked” decision not to sell the t-shirt over one complaint.
Another TWD fan launched a petition on Change.org to bring back the shirt on Primark outlets. Jasmine Williams stressed that if “Eeny meeny miny moe” is a racist rhyme, then children should stop singing it in playgrounds. Williams added she should be arrested as well whenever she sings the song while choosing which socks to wear.
Image Source: Instagram/AMC The Walking Dead