InterNational Anti-Racism Group (INARG) have launched a new campaign, this time again the toy making giant Mattel, in a bid to put pressure on them to dis-continue their Junkyard Dog action figure model. The toy depicts a black man wearing a chain around his neck.
The group states that:
“JYD’ was a, racist, wrestling persona, invented by a promoter, Bill Watts (a white man), which Mr. Slyvester Ritter (a former, USA professional football player) portrayed. JYD promoter, and Mr. Ritter, used popular racist stereotypes (i.e. African Americans/Blacks as ‘animal-like’, lives ‘of low value’, and neck shackling referencing; commanded by another/enslavement/imprisonment), to appease, the predominately white audiences, in those times. An exploitation used, to also present JYD as, ‘unthreatening’, and ’controllable’, while facing, predominately, white competitors. This persona, dehumanized JYD.”
INARG explain more about the toy, its racist implications and their campaign via the Change.org petition page here. Please support the campaign by signing and sharing the petition to get this toy either out of stores and away from children or completely revised as soon as possible.