Jeremy Lin has inspired a flavor of frozen yogurt. And the initial version of that frozen treat inspired outcries of racial insensitivity.
The folks at a Boston area Ben & Jerry’s ice cream shop must not have been paying close attention to the fervor they intended to capitalize on with their “Taste the Lin-Sanity” flavor. Otherwise, they probably would not have included fortune cookies in the recipe.
The local shop posted this apology on Facebook and Twitter:
“On behalf of Ben & Jerry’s Boston Scoop Shops we offer a heartfelt apology if anyone was offended by our handmade Linsanity flavor that we offered at our Harvard Square location. We are proud and honored to have Jeremy Lin hail from one of our fine, local universities and we are huge sports fans. We were swept up in the nationwide Linsanity momentum. Our intention was to create a flavor to honor Jeremy Lin’s accomplishments and his meteoric rise in the NBA, and recognize that he was a local Harvard graduate. We try demonstrate our commitment as a Boston-based, values-led business and if we failed in this instance we offer our sincere apologies.”
Ben & Jerry’s posted a Twitpic of the local shop’s apology, saying, “Thanks to our pals at @BenJerryBoston for this statement -- we know they always try to do the right thing.”
The offending cookies quickly were replaced in the recipe by bits of waffle cones, and the limited edition pints still sold out over the weekend.
This was not the first controversy involving insensitivity toward the cultural background of the Asian American basketball player who gained international fame since becoming the starting point guard for the New York Knicks earlier this month.
The MSG network took some heat for broadcasting a fan’s sign with Lin’s face posted over a fortune cookie. ESPN has apologized and fired one employee and suspended another in the aftermath of three separate incidents of “offensive and inappropriate comments made on ESPN outlets during our coverage of Jeremy Lin.”