Gang Yankees?

Written by Jill Colvin on . Posted in Posts, Sports.


The feud between Yankees and Red Sox fans may go back
generations, but this is taking it a little far. A group of East
Harlem
parents is calling on the New York Yankees to stop selling official
team hats that blatantly feature gang colors and symbols
. Yes, you read that
right. Gang symbols. The hats are available in three versions (pictured). One includes a gold
crown above the “NY,” one a red and black bandana stitched in, and another a
blue and gray bandana—the signs of the Latin Kings, Bloods, and Crips
respectively.

“These corporations are capitalizing on known friction
within communities of color,” accused Johnny Rivera, president of the Coalition
to Protect Our Children, which held a protest yesterday to raise awareness and
pressure retailers to pull the New Era caps from their shelves. “Any
11-year-old could buy one of these and get jumped if they walk in the wrong
neighborhood because they don’t know the signs.”

Rivera said he discovered the hats last week on a
back-to-school shopping trip with his son. With no knowledge of the symbolism
behind the designs, he offered to purchase one of the hats for his 11-year old,
who told his dad that the hat was “a gang thing” and could put him in danger.

One retailer, Tom Dick and Harry’s, has already agreed to
stop selling the caps. The store’s manager, Isaiah Hill, told amNew York
that a friend of his was jumped after wearing one of them in “the wrong
neighborhood” in East New York. A spokesperson for the
MLB said that the league was unaware of the symbolism.

Handout photo from Johnny C. Rivera on amNewYork.com

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