Photos of five-year-old Liam Mango modelling a H&M ‘coolest monkey in the jungle’ hoodie went viral online. Many on social media accused H&M of racism, and there have been protests in some of their stores in South Africa.
The company has apologised. When Liam’s mother, Terry Mango, from Stockholm, Sweden, said she didn’t see the hoodie as racist, many reacted angrily. She spoke to Nuala McGovern on BBC OS about the backlash she has faced
Terry Mango, claims she has been called a ‘monkey’ after she said critics of the controversial advert should ‘get over it’. She told Gulf News that some vile social media users have even called a “monkey” while trying to defend her son.
She said: “How can you fight racism if you make racist remarks?
Twitter users called out the clothing advert, with many highlighting it for being unacceptable and even “racist.”
Others described the image “irresponsible” and “offensive.”
An H&M spokeswoman said: “This image has now been removed from all H&M channels and we apologise to anyone this may have offended.”
But that didn’t stop rows erupting on Twitter, with one user commenting: “That obviously isn’t meant to be racist. It’s only offensive if you choose for it to be, which you have.”