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In the “how come this took so long” category, Harrods of London reveals to the world the first major toy department not bifurcated by colored gender lines. There is no blue and black aisle for weapons and and action figures and noise-making vehicles. Ovens aren’t dripping pink and spilling out of the Barbie home remodeling aisle. Rationally and wonderfully, this 26,000 square foot Toy Kingdom is grouped by themes. Basketballs and footballs are no longer in the “you can only play with these if you have a penis” blue aisle. They are rightfully placed in the sporting goods section.

I think we have a long way to go in showing our children that the world is what you make it, not what other people want to impose on you.  However this is the start of that. It shows us that no girl should have to cry because the toys she wants aren’t in the aisle that marketers and parents and other consumers say is for her.  Don’t tell me if something is right for me. Don’t tell that to the children either. Let us make up our own minds without the world putting bullshit gender labels on everything. Girls can climb trees. Boys can enjoy baking. Girls can be rough. Boys can sit still. Let’s not put people in categories because it’s easier.

If you wonder why this matters, try looking at this cloud tag that shows how advertisers market products to innocent children.

Marketing toward girls

 

Marketing words for boys

For more insight into these tag clouds, see this excellent post at Achilles Effect.

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