As tempests in a teapot go the bashing of Joe-College.com and owner Larry Sinks over a K-State coach T-shirt ranks right up there.
A mini media frenzy erupted today over a Joe-College T shirt that sophomorically read: Frank Martin Mows My Lawn.
The controversy being that Martin is Cuban and the lawn mowing angle was racist.
When did grass cutting become a Cuban stereotype.
Now the story behind the story, that other local media didn’t bother to check out.
“Well, I’m getting ragged for it but basically what happened is we decided to do the shirt – a college kid submitted it to me – then the next thing we know, somebody said it was racist,” Sinks says. “I thought (Martin) was Italian but somebody said he’s Cuban, so we pulled the shirt.”
As for Sinks motive – forget racism…
“The intent of the shirt was that K-State is an agricultural school and the joke was that the guy may be a great coach in Manhattan but he can’t coach in Lawrence.”
A stereotype/joke Sinks has played out in any number of other T-shirts bagging on K-State.
“There are a lot of funny ones in there,” Sinks says. “My shirts are not meant to hurt anybody, they’re just meant to be funny. We don’t ever try to hurt anybody.”
Sinks declined to address the subject, but sources say he called Martin yesterday to explain the mistake and apologize.