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Monkey T-shirt displayed with African-American boy’s photo generates apology

This unfortunate pairing of a monkey T-shirt with a face of an African-American boy has generated an apology from the T-shirt maker. This photo generated much discussion on Twitter.
This unfortunate pairing of a monkey T-shirt with a face of an African-American boy has generated an apology from the T-shirt maker. This photo generated much discussion on Twitter. © elchekatzo/Twitter

San Diego clothing company Just Add a Kid has apologized after a retailer paired one of its monkey T-shirts with the face of an African-American boy.

The company called the incident “a total misunderstanding.”

The store display came to light after someone took a photo of it and posted it on Twitter Wednesday.

The T-shirts in the line are decorated with the cartoon bodies of zoo animals, princesses, cowboys, angels, farmers, and other images. In stores, they’re displayed on cardboard hangers that show faces of children from various ethnic backgrounds.

It’s up to each store to match the T-shirts with the hangers, company officials said.

This particular pairing, made “without consideration for how it may appear to many consumers,” was “not authorized, condoned or tolerated,” the company said in a statement.

No word on where the store is located.

“We are looking into all the situations that occurred around this little incident,” the company’s co-creator Lowell Cohen told the New York Daily News. “We're looking at the vendor, we’re speaking to our employees.”

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