03 January 2006

Getting all the facts, and getting them right

A Christian blog I came across contains yet another example of bizzare conservatism. He points to a Concerned Women for America page saying

On the Barbie Web site, www.Barbie.com, there is a poll that asks children their age and sex. The age choices are 4-8, but as Bob Knight, Director of CWA’s Culture & Family Institute, notes children are given three options for their choice of gender.

Now first off, you have to surf really deep within the pages to find the said "poll" - it's a registration form if you do something that would require a username, such as creating a wishlist. If there's another place you register (like for games as the screenshot they show indicates), I didn't see it. It's not like Barbie is putting this on their front page!

At the time they did the article, they said something to the effect of (correct me if I'm wrong and I'll fix it):

The page is aimed at children age 4-8, you can't choose any other ages. The gender choices are boy, girl, and "I don't know."

Well, either they were looking at a different page, or Barbie changed it, because what I see is gender choices of boy, girl, or "I don't want to say." If it were "I don't know" for the third choice, that would still make good sense to me - according to the CDC, children typically learn what sex they are by age three, but since there are always variations, leaving an "I don't know" option is nothing more than prudent for more slowly developing children. It's not a "promoting gender confusion" thing, it's not a gay agenda, it's acknowledging developmental stages of child psychology. Yeah they're confused about their gender, because they're not yet old or mature enough to have a clue what gender is!

(And btw, when I accessed the Barbie registration page, you just put in your birthdate, and the year you type at will.)


Scribe said...

You are indeed looking at a different page. As you pointed out on a comment to my blog, you found a registration page (http://barbie.everythinggirl.com/activities/friends/backpack/newuser.asp). What CWA found, and I later verified, is on a Barbie Poll page (http://barbie.everythinggirl.com/activities/btv/poll/index.aspx?pollid=118). I agree that the selection available on the registration page is more appropriate and could very well have been the intention on the Barbie Poll page. In any case, it's certainly a case of making a mountain out of a very small molehill.

zandperl said...

Ah, thanks for the link! The poll page actually does have more than just age 4-8 choices, there's a scroll bar on the right of that drop-down menu. I suspect either the CWA didn't see that, or were (as you say) making a mountain of a molehill.

If we keep this up, every company will have to start hiring one extreme conservative and one extreme liberal and let them duke it out about everything the company ever does! :-P It's ridiculous.