The death of George Floyd and the protests against police brutality that followed have also once again put the spotlight on the use of the Punisher logo by police officers. The skull logo, often altered to include a blue line, has become a popular symbol with some members of law enforcement, with many websites selling bootleg merchandise.
While Disney hasn’t done anything (yet) to stop the sale of this merchandise, Punisher co-creator Gerry Conway has taken matters into his own hands. He has a campaign up on the website Custom Ink call Skulls for Justice, and has teamed with several artists to sell shirts featuring altered versions of the Punisher logo, in support of Black Lives Matter. And so far, he said, they’ve raised more than $45,000 for the organization.
“For too long, symbols associated with a character I co-created have been co-opted by forces of oppression and to intimidate black Americans,” Conway is quoted as saying on the campaign page. “This character and symbol was never intended as a symbol of oppression. This is a symbol of a systematic failure of equal justice. It’s time to claim this symbol for the cause of equal justice and Black Lives Matter.”
Some of the artists who have created designs include Jerry Ordway, Xan Mof, Michael Calero, Wess Hancock and more. Several more have yet to be released.
The fundraiser and sale of the shirts will go through June 30, and they plan to release a total of 22 shirts in all. Each shirt must meet a minimum threshold to be produced. Four of the eight shirts ont he site have currently met that threshold.