…so it seems that folks have been lobbying and nagging Mattel to create a bald Barbie for kids with cancer, alopecia, and that mental disorder where kids pull their hair out (and occasionally eat it). MGA Entertainment took up the cause and are creating True Hope Bratz and Moxie Girlz which are bald and come with cute little caps, headscarves, and bravery beads. And I’m okay with that. I can’t wait for them to hit store shelves.
After the MGA’s announcement, I guess Mattel saw that they had no choice…it was either create a bald doll or allow their main business rival to make them look stupid (and Mattel has a history of caving into pressure anyway—I remind you of that infernal Greedypeace boycott which Mattel foolishly gave in to). Bald and Beautiful Barbie will be produced…but only to kids hospitalized with cancer! The kids with alopecia and that kooky mental disorder are either going to have to be hospitalized themselves or just do without, which isn’t fair. I think that if Mattel is going to make a bald doll, then it should be released to everyone, just like the True Hope Bratz and Moxie Girlz. But I’m still okay with the idea…I wasn’t in the beginning because I think it glamorizes a terrible disease and encourages little girls to focus more their looks instead of developing individuality and focusing on getting well. I still feel that a bald doll may do that, but that’s where the parents should be stepping in to encourage their kids. I just hope that Barbie doesn’t get the blame when some of those parents fall down on the job (and some will…it’s inevitable).
Okay, so that’s what’s been going on. Bald Barbie for cancer-stricken kids, bald Bratz and Moxie Girlz too. Fine. But now…NOW there’s a group lobbying for a Barbie stricken with diabetes, as well as an HIV-positive Barbie!!! Are you fucking KIDDING ME??? HIV BARBIE??? What will the parents say about that one? How did Barbie get HIV in the first place??? Parents didn’t like Tokidoki Barbie with her full-body tattoo (never mind the fact that she was for collectors like me), they don’t like the idea of a Katniss Everdeen Barbie (based off that Hunger Games series and also directed at collectors, IF the idea even comes to fruition). Do these lobbyists honestly think that parents will accept an HIV-infected doll? I can hear it now…”Barbie promotes risky lifestyles. Barbie promotes drug use. Barbie promotes unsafe sex.” No, I can’t see the idea of an HIV-positive doll EVER taking off. And frankly, I think the idea of a diabetic doll is pushing it too. Cancer victims end up deformed by the meds they take, which for a young girl can be traumatic. Diabetics don’t have to put up with deformity. And imagine if the doll came with an insulin kit with needles? I guarantee that there will be some kids who will pretend that it’s a heroin kit instead, and that will definitely get parents hot and bothered.
Whatever happened to the days when a child had to simply put up with being different, and had no doll, no toy, no NOTHING but themselves, their families, and God’s grace pulling them through? You see, this Bald Barbie campaign started because of one little girl who felt bad about how she looked and thought a bald Barbie might help her to fit in. Don’t get me wrong, I truly am sorry that she is sick and I hope she beats that cancer and goes on to live a healthy life. But where are her parents to tell her she’s beautiful no matter what, and that fitting in is NOT anywhere near as important as beating this bastard of a disease? She and all other sick kids need to understand that there were plenty of children before them who were sick or deformed and they made it through life without the aid of a doll, and subsequently went on to become productive members of society.
I don’t mean to sound uncaring about the plight of pediatric diabetics and young HIV victims. But for Pete’s sake, where did the common sense go? Just because one set of folks has a Barbie doesn’t mean that every set of folks can or should. It simply is not possible, nor is it reasonable. There are far too many diseases in this world, and far too many conditions. And if there were a Barbie for each one then she’d cease to serve the function she was intended for (that being to serve as a plaything and a source of fun and enjoyment for children and some adults). And we all know what happens to a toy when it ceases to be fun. It becomes discarded, and production ceases, and kids are left without a very vital plaything. That should not be allowed to happen.
Whew!!! I feel like I’m writing a term paper for college instead of blogging! But there are my feelings on the subject, and you may take them or leave them. And for the record, I think that the idea of a Katniss Everdeen doll is splendid. I hope they’ll do Effie Trinkett and the boys too. If the overly protective parents don’t like it then they can sit on a landmine.