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‘Disturbing’ T-shirt with Robert Pickton holding ‘hookery smoked bacon’ causes outrage

A T-shirt featuring Canada’s most notorious serial killer is prompting outrage.

For years, Robert Pickton killed women on his pig farm in Port Coquitlam before he was arrested.

Seventeen years since he was convicted, a T-shirt has surfaced showing Pickton with a grin and holding a slice of bacon with words that read, “Pickton Farms, over 50 flavours of hookery smoked bacon.”

“This is so disgusting,” said Palexelsiya Lorelei Williams. “For them to refer to my cousin as a flavour … that’s why I wanted to puke because they’re mocking it.”

Her cousin, Tanya Holyk, was just 21 when she disappeared.

Evidence against Pickton included body parts, multiple bones found in pigsties and several DNA samples found throughout the property.

Pickton was originally charged with 26 murders, but 20 of them were stayed, including Holyk’s.

In December 2007, he was convicted of six counts of second-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison with no chance of parole for 25 years.

Williams calls the T-shirt vile and misogynistic.

“It’s disturbing. And I can’t believe that they think this is funny,” she said. “Not only are they mocking my cousin, and the rest of the women, they are putting us in danger as well. They’re showing the world that we can be targeted and made fun of.”

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The merchandise is sold on the Danger Cats website and is marked as sold out.

Global News sent the Canadian comedy troupe multiple requests for comment but did not receive a response.

In the group’s latest video posted to YouTube, the outrage surrounding the T-shirt is addressed. “This is the purpose of the comedy. If nobody talks about it, it gets forgotten. And it may be a tasteless joke to some, but for me, it is my way of being on the side of the same people that are coming after us,” said one of the members.

But Williams is not buying it and believes they’re trying to profit off the tragedies.

B.C. Solicitor General Mike Farnworth, a long-time Port Coquitlam MLA, is also outraged by the T-shirt. “There’s nothing humorous about that,” Farnworth told Global News. “I’m more than appalled. I just think that it’s absolutely one of the most disgusting things that I have ever heard. And the people behind that should be absolutely ashamed of themselves.”

Danger Cats shows cancelled

The comedy troupe is on a cross-country tour and two of its shows have been cancelled. Venues in Winnipeg and Thunder Bay have decided not to host the Danger Cats over backlash of the group’s jokes about residential schools and unmarked graves.

Esther Maud, a Thunder Bay resident, felt compelled to write to the local venues when she found out the group was coming to her hometown.

“It just makes you cringe, you know, to know that that came out of that man’s mouth and in front of people and hearing people laughing in the background thinking that that was funny, like, it’s not funny at all,” Maud said.

Maud said the jokes were racist and is looking for a sincere apology from Danger Cats. Until that happens, she’d like to see other venues cancel their shows. The group is scheduled to perform at the House of Comedy in New Westminster next month.

Williams said she’d like to see the venue call off the show.

“I’m emotionally drained and emotionally exhausted. But at the same time, I will keep fighting for her I will keep fighting for us,” she said.

The House of Comedy did not respond to a request for comment.

&copy 2024 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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