After a protest in East Harlem, baseball cap manufacturer New Era has agreed to pull Yankees caps from store shelves. A number of caps seem to refer to the Bloods, Crips and Latin Kings and became a controversy during a back-to-school shopping trip.

Jose Rivera liked a Yankees cap with a gold crown on it and wanted to buy it for his son, but his son explained that he could be in danger for wearing it. Rivera told NY1, "It was [my son] who said this crown might be construed as something possibly associated with a gang. I said ‘what kind of a gang?’ He said maybe the Latin Kings. I said ‘why? It’s just a New York Yankee hat.’ It’s quite nice. I liked it and the crown to me said ‘you're the king!’ That’s great."

If you watch the video from NY1, you'll also see Rivera's son explaining how the red bandanna cap stands for the Bloods while the blue one is for the Crips. And the NY Times reports that Rivera also asked many kids what the caps meant, "From 8 years old and up, they knew they represented violent gangs."

New Era, a Buffalo based company, released a statement saying:

In response to the situation in New York City regarding our caps, New Era Cap offers the following statement.

It is our mission at New Era to create, design and market headwear that follows fashion trends around the world. Recently, it has been brought to our attention that some combinations of icons and colors on a select number of our caps could be too closely perceived to be in association with gangs.

In response, we, along with Major League Baseball (MLB) have pulled those caps.

In addition, as part of our ongoing effort to ensure that there is no possibility that our products are seen as promoting gangs or gang related activity, we are working closely with MLB and continuing our internal efforts with local gang suppression units to set-up training sessions to better understand gang symbols, names and locations.

A good move, but really, it seems pretty clear that the caps were referring to gangs.

New Era has a license with the MLB. Maybe we're classicists, but it's sort of weird seeing caps in different colors with the Yankees logos - why not stick to the tried and true team colors?