Memin Pinguin is an extremely controversial Mexican comic book. The global media is lashing out on the Spanish language illustrations which depict the stories of a Cuban-Mexican boy living under conditions of extreme poverty. This week, Wal-Mart decided to pull the comics from their shelves and discontinue sales entirely.
The book, first illustrated by Alberto Cabrera, then later by Sixto Valencia Burgos, depicts Memin with monkey-like features and when he's bullied at school, the other children call him 'Negro.'
"We understand that Memin is a popular figure in Mexico," Wal-Mart said in a statement. "However, given the sensitivity to the negative image Memin can portray to some, we felt that it was best to no longer carry the item in our stores. We apologize to those customers who may have been offended by the book's images."
Even in the age of the internet, over 100,000 issues of Memin Pinguin are sold a week. The cartoon has been around since first writen by Yolanda Vargas DulchÃ© in the 1940s, but now that there have been talks about turning the comic book into a movie, it's receiving significant scrutiny from around the world.