Have you heard that Hasbro has finally decided to make its easy-bake oven in colors beyond pink and purple? This is big news on two fronts. One, it’s incredible that a large manufacturer of children’s toys can play a role in the paradigm shift of gender-segregated toys. Two, it’s a beautiful climax for a powerful social media campaign! McKenna Pope, a 13-year-old girl, and her mother made a YouTube video featuring McKenna’s four-year-old brother who liked to bake, and they started a petition on Change.org, the electronic juggernaut that enables individuals to start petitions demanding change. Their petition was signed by nearly 45,000 people, and many famous chefs who heard about this also put the pressure on Hasbro.
What was the whole uproar over? The color of the easy-bake oven. Let’s try and wrap our minds around that. We live in 2012 and yet the majority of the world and our businesses think colors define gender. Not that this is news to anyone who lives outside of a rock or who’s stepped one foot inside an infant’s clothing store or a toy store. The world is bifurcated by sweet, pink cupcakes and blue, rugged action figures.
However, it takes JUST ONE DROP of water to turn the wheel of progress. I’m elated that I signed this petition. I’m thrilled that a mother encouraged her daughter to fight for this cause. I’m joyous that big name chefs got behind this campaign. I can only hope that one day our choices are so limitless and gender-bifurcation so rare that a petition like this one is a relic of the past!