Walmart Nazi Tshirt Watch: Day 30


Thirty days after t-shirts bearing Nazi insignia were discovered in Walmart, the retailer has yet to remove them from their stores. Rob spotted this one in Salem, NH, on 12/09/06.

He writes:

    “I thought of The Consumerist when I saw this in the Wal-Mart Super Center in Salem, NH. The picture was taken on Saturday 12-9-06. I had not seen the Totenkopf shirt there during the previous flurry of posts on the subject, so they must have put them on the shelves recently.”

It’s really pathetic that such a powerful retailer can’t remove a simple shirt from all its shelves, especially after initially promising to do so in days. What if it poked your eyes out? — BEN POPKEN

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Comments

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  1. Ass_Cobra says:

    Maybe Wal-Mart just doesn’t cater to the constituency that cares about this. Please see links below for items that Wal-Mart has banned or refused to carry:

    http://www.cbc.ca/arts/story/2004/10/21/jonstewart041021.h

    http://actionnetwork.org/populationconnection/alert-descri

    http://www.readersread.com/cgi-bin/bookblog.pl?bblog=10290

    Just so we’re clear, shirts with Nazi imagery in, satire out. It’s 1933 all over again in Wal-Marts across America.

    PS. The asshats at Edelman have their NY office two blocks from mine so I can go down and ask them how they want to spin this if you like.

    PPS. Yes, I can absorb the irony of calling for one product to be removed from the shelves while criticising censorship. I don’t think that a business has any moral obligation to remove merchandise, I’m merely pointing out who Wal-Mart is targeting.

  2. schvitzatura says:

    Again, please see if there is actual inventory on the Wally World floor for the Teutonic skull tee…seeing a placard where these may have been is one thing…seeing stacks of these puppies in a range of sizes is an indicator how serious the JITmeisters at Wal-Mart are about getting questionable SKUs removed from their sales floor.

  3. I see your point, schvitzatura. But even the presence of a placard makes you wonder what Walmart’s internal recall system is. If it’s simply an e-mail to store managers (“Dear Managers, Please immediately remove the item described below and all related displays as it has recently been discovered to be associated with Nazi imagery.”), and the managers can’t follow directions, how do we know it’s going to be any more effective with something that, say, threatens customers’ health? (“Dear Managers, Please immediately remove all spinach from your grocery sections due to an E. Coli outbreak.”)

  4. Chris says:

    As we all know, giant, powerful organizations can easily control even the smallest details of their operations – the U.S. government, the Catholic Church…

  5. DogBreath says:

    Last week, I found some shirts still on display in Springfield, VA Walmart and I tried to buy all the XL’s (four in all). But when I tried to pay for them, they rang up as “sale not allowed.” I the checkout lady was confused, so I asked if she could manually just ring the price up, but she wouldn’t, calling over her supervisor. I never explained to them what the shirts were and I am pretty sure they had no clue to obscure history of the image. But they would not sell them to me even though the were still on display.

  6. Michael says:

    “What if it poked your eyes out?”

    I think Ben hit on the biggest issue here.

    I really hope that when product safety recalls come out that Wal-Mart has a more effective mechanism in place for removing merchandise from their shelves. Granted, this matter lacks the same sense of immediate urgency, but Wal-Mart said that they would be removed and they have not been in at least a smattering of stores. I’d hate to think that the same thing might happen with an item which poses a danger to public health or safety.

    I don’t particularly care to be reading about the t-shirt issue every week, but I do think Wal-Mart needs to keep their word and I’m glad Consumerist is staying on them about it.

  7. Jesse McBesse says:

    I nominate um, Ben, to go to walmart with a list of recalled products (http://www.cpsc.gov/) and see if they’re actually selling any.

    Finally this damn Nazi shirt drama is becoming a larger issue for me. kind of.

  8. bones says:

    Ok, this is a recall of a product based on political/ethical unsuitability. But it makes one wonder how fast Wally World would remove a recalled product that was actually defective or harmful.

  9. FLConsumer says:

    Can someone kindly tell me when Wal-Mart will be stocking the official 2007 Borat “Running of the Jew” shirts? I tried to buy one at the movie theater, but they had no T-shirts whatsoever!

  10. JeffreyK says:

    Could someone please post the official memo Wal-Mart issued regarding an apology and intent to pull this merchandise? I’ve read the post with the announcement, but that’s not an overly official document. Will all the sighting that seem to be showing up, I’m beginning to question the authenticity of an actual announcement from Wal-Mart regarding this t-shirt.

    I’m not going to nit-pick this, but if we’re going to beat a dead-horse, it’s like to see the official reason. If I’ve missed the white-paper on this, I apologize in advance.

  11. mendel says:

    “how do we know it’s going to be any more effective with something that, say, threatens customers’ health?”

    Ok, I’ll bite. If they *did* remove the t-shirt efficiently, how do you know they *wouldn’t* screw up something over in the food aisles?

  12. Anonymously says:

    There’s nothing in that frame that shows the date of the photograph. This picture could be from 30 days ago.

  13. infotangent says:

    schvitzatura,

    I took the picture at Wal-Mart and there was a stack of shirts right below the placard. I wish I had gotten a better picture.

    Greg P.,

    I know it’s only my word, but I assure you that I took the picture on Saturday, December 12, 2006. If I can get another picture or something else to prove the date, I would be happy to do so.

  14. infotangent says:

    Dammit. I meant that the picture was taken on December 9, 2006 NOT 12-12-06. Stupid, lousy typing skills.

  15. komakino says:

    maybe this isn’t really the case, but there’s a band called death in june whose first release was in 1978. also from what research i did, the symbol has been around before the nazis.