British police phoned Donald Reynolds and told him he couldn't have Sunday lunch with his family. They needed to see him at the shop he owned immediately, so he raced there fearing the worst. But when he arrived he found that the emergency was three "golly" dolls displayed in his window. At first, Reynolds thought it was a joke, but the police told him it wasn't a prank. They were going to seize the dolls. Gollies, short for golliwog, are based a once-popular series of children's books, and the images are derived from a caricature of a minstrel-show performer in blackface. Someone had complained about the dolls, and police warned him if he put them back, he could face charges under race-hate laws. But after weeks of investigation, police returned the dolls and informed Reynolds he could continue to sell them, but they also offered "suitable advice about the sensitivities of placing such items on display."
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