Morrissey under fire for selling 'racist' T-shirts

16th Mar 17 | Entertainment News

British rocker Morrissey has been accused of racial insensitivity over a T-shirt set to go on sale during his upcoming tour.

Morrissey performs at Way Out West Festival

The controversial T-shirt is emblazoned with a picture of African-American writer and civil rights activist James Baldwin's face.

Above the image of Baldwin are lyrics from Morrissey's former band The Smiths' song Unloveable, which read, "I wear black on the outside because black is how I feel on the inside."

Although Morrissey has previously written about his love for Baldwin in his 2013 autobiography, social media users were quick to object to the T-shirt due to the combination of the words and image.

Hunter Felt, a journalist at The Guardian, wrote on Twitter, "Morrissey jumping in on the extremely hot "racist people co-opting black activists for their own purposes" trend."

Meanwhile editors at Britain's FACT magazine published an article headlined, "Morrissey is selling racist t-shirts because he is a f**king idiot".

Baldwin's work explored the unspoken intricacies of racial, sexual, and class distinctions in mid-20th-century America. A 2016 documentary film I Am Not Your Negro, directed by Raoul Peck, is based on the novelist's unfinished manuscript Remember This House. It received an Academy Award nomination for Best Documentary Feature at the 89th Academy Awards (17).

The opinionated rocker has come under fire in the past for making racially insensitive comments. In a 2010 interview with The Guardian he described the Chinese people as a "subspecies" when objecting to the country's treatment of animals.

In 2012 editors at Britain's NME magazine published an apology to the singer after he sued them for libel over the publication of a 2007 interview he alleged wrongly portrayed him as a racist.

According to Morrissey's official fansite True To You, the controversial T-shirt will be sold at venues hosting Morrissey's five date U.S. tour, which gets underway in April (17).

© WENN Newsdesk 2017

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