Outrage over teen ‘toe sucking’ event billed as school charity for disabled people

The founder of a non-profit coffee shop that benefited from a public school charity which featured teens sucking and licking peanut butter off each others’ toes told The Lion he’s not…

The founder of a non-profit coffee shop that benefited from a public school charity which featured teens sucking and licking peanut butter off each others’ toes told The Lion he’s not responsible for the event.

“The kids choose it themselves,” Tim Herbel, co-founder of Not Your Average Joe’s Coffee Shops (NYAJ) in Oklahoma said about the fundraiser, after a video of the event went viral.

NYAJ hires students and adults with intellectual, development and physical disabilities in its coffee shops.

Advocates for families and parental rights have been outraged since video of the event was posted on local Fox News 25.

“GRAPHIC WARNING- Video sent to FOX 25 shows students at Deer Creek High kissing and sucking on feet yesterday,” said a video posted on X. “@DCAntlers confirms the video, saying the students volunteered in challenges to help raise money for their annual philanthropy week.”  

Video shows a row of apparently male teens lined up in push up positions, licking and kissing the feet of classmates, at least one of whom appears to be a female. 

Oklahoma State Superintendent of Education Ryan Walters said his agency is investigating the incident. 

Herbel, an ordained minister, disclaimed any responsibility for the event, saying that his non-profit coffee shops simply try to give disabled adults the opportunity to have a job. 

When asked if perhaps the coffee shops shouldn’t be taking donations from such a scandalous event, Herbel asked rhetorically if he should be punishing the efforts of the hundreds of children who didn’t participate to punish the “eight who did.”

Fox 25 reports the school raised $152,830.38 for the coffee shop.  

A statement by the school district admitted it “failed to uphold the dignity of our students.” 

“We want to stress to our community that much of the information accompanying this video is inaccurate,” said the district, in a statement to The Lion. “However, through this specific game we failed to uphold the dignity of our students and the proud image of our community. We have a responsibility to protect our Antlers and showcase them in a positive light. In regards to this one particular activity, we fell short and for that we greatly apologize.” 

When asked which information accompanying the video was inaccurate, the district told The Lion the claim that teachers’ toes were “featured in the video” is false.  

Over the weekend the district sent an email to student families, promising it is “taking steps to ensure that [such an event] is not repeated.”  

The email also mentioned $152,830.38 was raised for NYAJ.   

Herbel told The Oklahoman the coffee shops have been harassed and inundated with one-star reviews after the video went viral, but a search of Google shows just one one-star review over the last 24 hours out of hundreds of published reviews.  

When asked about the discrepancy, Herbel told The Lion the reviews were coming through the coffee shops’ corporate website, so the company was able to suppress those.

NYAJ sent The Lion one review, plus screenshots of negative comments it’s received. 

A review of the images showed strong condemnations of the company, in part, for taking donations from a charity that “had children licking toes to raise money.” Some messages contained profanity, though none contained threats against employees.

“What in GOD’s name is wrong with you perverts?” asked one person.

Many of the commenters pleaded with the company to refuse the money, with one saying it “reflects poorly” on the company.