Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Truly Sickening

You might have seen some of the stories recently, that the religious nuts are going after Barbie Dolls now. Y'know, they do this sort of thing so much, we don't usually even pay attention.

So, anyway, this time I bit. I read something on a blog about this and went to see for myself. I went to the Concerned Women for America web site, titled "Barbie’s Web Site Promotes Gender Confusion." They have some text, but the main part of it is an audio recording you listen to. Here's the text:
The iconic Barbie Doll has become another tool for promoting gender confusion among children. 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. Click here to listen.

And ... yuck ... I clicked there.

You have some holier-than-thou lady interviewing Bob Knight. We know Mr. Knight from his performance at the Citizen for a Responsible Curriculum's March "town hall" meeting. He was one of the ones they had to say was a little too extreme for them.

So she starts out with this:
We've told you that Mattel, who now owns American Girl dolls, has been promoting Girls, Inc., an organization that promotes abortion and lesbianism to young girls, but we've also found that Mattel is promoting that agenda though the Barbie line.

She introduces Bob Knight, and says:
Bob, one of our constitutents directed us to a Barbie poll on the Barbie.com web site, and we found something rather disturbing there, aimed at kids -- tell us about it.

Knight says:
Yeah, there's not a whole lot that can shock me any more, Martha, but when you go to the Barbie web site, and they ask a series of questions, how old are you, and they give you -- you can click on a certain age, but the second question is the eye-opener. "I am a" and they give you, not two choices, but three. You can click on "I am a girl," "I am a boy," or "I don't know."

Then ... you've got to hear the sound of this lady's voice. Oh, she's shocked. Shocked.
And this is directed at children age four through eight, those are the only age options in this poll. That's a really young age to be directing something along the lines of bisexuality, gender confusion.

Bob picks it up:
That's the agenda here, is the idea that well maybe people aren't born a particular biological sex, or they are but that shouldn't determine their gender identity. And that's a very big component of the homosexual activist agenda, now...

Then he goes on.

With all apparent sincerity, this despicable woman -- she's something straight out of the Marx Brothers -- asks:
Well, Bob, is Mattel taking plays right out of the homosexual agenda playbook? Sounds like something we would hear about from GLSEN, or some of these school groups.

To which Bob responds, with a profound tone of puzzlement in his sincere voice:
Well, I don't now what prompted them to do this, it's so bizarre to give them a third choice for a gender, that they obviously are being influenced, whether it's inside the company or outside the company, we're not sure.

OK, well, it's sickening. I mean, it really just makes your skin crawl.

The reason I had listened to this disgusting stuff at all was something I saw at Modern Science blog. He had looked at the terrible gay-agenda-promoting poll at the Barbie site.

I'm not going to quote him on this... I'm going to go there myself.

Ah, ok, so the Barbie web site is bright colors and a noisy sound track. I think that's some movie star's face at the top of the page, but I don't know who.

I dig around... where's the poll? Where is the poll?

I don't see any poll.

OK, so I follow Modern Science's link. Ah, here it is, a place to register for something.

The first question:
1. Pick a Nickname to use on Barbie.comSM. Make sure it's between 5 and 15 letter long.

There's a little pink text box for your Nickname.

Then ... there it is. Question Number Two. You can see the text, but the options are hidden in a dropdown box. Now, I will reveal ALL:
2. Are you a Boy or a Girl?
Boy
Girl
I don't want to say

It doesn't say "I don't know" at all!

Bob Knight and that other disgusting person were simply lying!

All of this is about nothing. Nothing at all.

Listen, when my kids were younger, I wouldn't let them fill out any forms on the Internet. Then, they got to an age, when I would let them do some stuff, join some groups or whatever, but they had to learn to be careful about revealing anything about themselves. We saw some creepy guys on instant messaging, in particular, and I didn't want any identifying information getting out.

So, if a form asked if you were a boy or a girl, a paranoid parent's warning buzzer should go off. And the correct answer should be, "I don't want to say."

This registration page was buried so deep on the Barbie site that I never could find it. So these Concerned Women for America can be sure you, the critical reader, won't find it, either.

That means they can say anything they want about it.

This is a perfect opportunity for them to lie.

We have had some Anons in the comments, apologists for the religious right, and I expect to hear from them on this. So, guys, do this, please. Follow the links I just printed, listen to Bob and Disgusto-Lady talk about this, about how the homosexual agenda is trying to lure kids into turning gay using poll questions with three answers. Go to the Barbie site, look at the registration form. And then, please, only then, come back to teachthefacts.org and write some nasty stuff about how we're twisting the truth. Let me see if any of you have the nerve to support these lying bigots.

39 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

emerging scandal:

not only are Federal tax dollars providing support for TTF, now it turns out state and local dollars go there too

you want to know how? follow the money

teacher salaries are paid by local governments; teachers are required to pay dues to NEA; NEA funds advocacy groups, such as GLAAD; GLAAD provides consultants to TTF

how bad is it? of the 290 million dollars the NEA collects for dues each year, about 90 million dollars goes for political purposes; while telling their members they are working to increase salaries and benefits for teachers, NEA funds a large part of the liberal agenda in the US, including TTF; no wonder teacher salaries remain so low- the group that should be advocating for teachers is too distracted

the 58 million dollar payroll of NEA goes to pay 600 employees, meaning an average salary of $97,000; the average teacher in the US, meanwhile, earns $46,000

TTF: scandalizing your country, today

January 03, 2006 1:52 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Oh yeah, Anon, TeachTheFacts is really making a lot of money from the NEA. We are so embarrassed that you have penetrated the secret of our fabulous wealth.

OK... now click those links, Smart Guy, or I'm going to start deleting your nonsense.

JimK

January 03, 2006 1:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 2:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 2:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 2:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 2:21 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

We are not obligated to provide a toilet for your personal expression, Anon. You want to discuss the issues? Fine.

JimK

January 03, 2006 2:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 2:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 2:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, it looks like Jim's blog reference realizes what might have happened here. Maybe Mattel changed the language in response to the CWA complaint. Is it possible? Who cares?

"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!"

January 03, 2006 2:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 3:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

January 03, 2006 3:16 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Even if Mattel had changed the wording, which ... there is no reason to believe ... and if it said "I don't know" there -- it is pure lunacy to try to roll your eyes and make a case that these guys are trying to persuade little girls to become somehow confused about their gender identity. I mean, it is just nuts.

JimK

January 03, 2006 3:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has Mattel used Barbie as a positive role model for girls over the years? What does everyone think?

January 03, 2006 3:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I mean, it is just nuts."

Yeah, man, corporate America trying to corrupt kids- that's, like, just nuts.

January 03, 2006 3:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey, dude, I just discovered this site. What's goin' on? Why's everything deleted? Did someone say somethin' too rad? Let it all hang out!

Surfin' Rameses

January 03, 2006 3:31 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Anon ... do you think Mattel is using Barbie to make girls become boys, or to make them become lesbians?

I would think the stronger argument is that Barbie represents an unrealistic female extreme that it is not healthy for girls to aspire to. I mean, if you wanna get political about what kind of dolls girls should play with ...

I have plenty of problems with Barbie, and was glad when my daughter outgrew her. But ... tell me you don't buy this.

JimK

January 03, 2006 3:35 PM  
Blogger andrear said...

Ha, ha, first Anon- what a nut!

As to Barbie- growing up- I had two dolls- a Betsy McCall and a Betsy Wetsy. Dolls that represented a child and a baby- Barbie represents a non-existent lifeform- not a role model. As to Knight and his crew- the only agenda Mattel is forwarding is the capitalist one-create young and avid consumers of disposable crap.

January 03, 2006 3:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"But ... tell me you don't buy this."

I don't think so but I don't read CWA's website as much as you apparently do (as a matter of fact, I don't know if I've ever read it). So, there may be more to it than I know.

Still, the issue is your hyperbole. The post is dishonestly sickening. Liberals have denounced Barbie as an improper role model for years. Now if a conservative group has a problem, you act like they're just plain "nuts". If corporate America decides they can make money off advancing a gay agenda, I have no doubt they'll do so.

Of course, they may discover they won't make money. I don't see "Brokeback Mountain" with its unrealistic plot line setting any box office records. I guess that 5-10% of the population is not rushing out to see it.

January 03, 2006 3:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Ha, ha, first Anon- what a nut!"

Interesting. The VP of an organization that thinks that laws should protect people from discrimination based on the way they feel. And she thinks I'm nuts.

January 03, 2006 3:59 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

I'll grant you it's not my most beautiful prose. I had a very visceral reaction when I heard this recording, these smug voices accusing Mattel of something that is just plain absurd.

I don't know about any liberals talking about Barbie, I don't ordinarily see women walking around who are built like that, but little girls seem to have fun pretending with her, so ... what do I know?

There are issues to discuss, having to do with sexuality, and how we raise our children in a world where sex sells, and what we teach them in school. But these people, I'm sorry I'm not nicer about it, but they are insane. There is not a grain of rationality to this, but they go around trying to accuse people of things.

I still don't believe you have listened to the recording, Anon. You seem intent on defending it, but oddly you don't want to hear what they are saying. Go ahead, man, listen to it. Tell me this seems all right to you.

It's just creepy, and if that makes a bad blog post, so be it, maybe I'll be more eloquent tomorrow or the next day.

JimK

January 03, 2006 4:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just listened to it, Jim, and I think if you find that creepy, you're just carrying a lot of baggage. First of all, they said they were going to call Mattel so they may have and Mattel may have changed it as a result. Second, they expressed surprise that Mattel would do something like that so they seemed to think Mattel was an alright company in general. Finally, they made some good comments about how Barbie promotes a materialistic model to girls and how gay advocacy groups keep expanding their definitions of their constituency- gay then bi then trans and, now, "questioning", trying to suck as many people into the tent as posible. This could potentially have an ill effect on youth at a vulnerable age.

They also discuss the importance of monitoring kids on the internet.

Also, anyone know about Girls, Inc.? Do they promote abortion and lesbianism? I've met the lady that started American Girls but, of course, she sold out to Mattel.

January 03, 2006 4:28 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

And so .. you think it is reasonable to assume that an "I don't want to say" option, or even if it was an "I don't know" option, on a question in a registration form is evidence that Mattel is promoting bisexuality and gender confusion among girls 4-8 years old?

C'mon, you think there's a chance of that?

JimK

January 03, 2006 4:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think Mattel, as a corporation, is promoting anything other than their bottom line. Corporations are made of lots of people, though. If they said "I don't know" it may have been something that slipped through quality control from a person with a liberal cultural view or the person running that department could have been trying to blur the whole idea of gender. Or it could be that Bob Knight read it wrong. I just don't find anything creepy in any scenario. I'd rather see us err on the side of caution in protecting kids at an age of vulnerability.

January 03, 2006 4:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

When: January 23-27

Who: Girls, Inc

What: Sponsoring a "no name-calling" week

Will TTF participate?

January 03, 2006 4:57 PM  
Blogger JimK said...

Note: because we have had some especially offensive Anonymous commentors, I set the comments here so that every single comment is sent to my email. So if I'm at a computer, I'll see it.

Today we had a flurry of comments that were rude, personal, had to do with people's jobs, and were off the topic. And I deleted a bunch of them. You will notice that once the person came back and wanted to talk about the subject, I let him stay. It's not a point of view I'm banning, but ugly behavior.

I can delete comments so that there is no trace, and only the person who remembers writing the comment will know it ever existed. Or I can delete it so that it says "comment deleted: This post has been removed by the blog administrator." I prefer to do that, so people reading the blog know what's going on -- better than things just disappearing magically.

There are several administrators here, all deputized to delete stuff, but of course I'm the one who does it most of the time.

Just wanted to let you know.

JimK

January 03, 2006 7:19 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

There's no doubt that some on the extreme right here are irrational and nonsensical. I would even go so far as to say delusional.

So I want to raise the level of discourse and suggest a book I'm reading by Marilynne Robinson called "The Death of Adam." Ms. Robinson is the prize-winning author of the novel "Housekeeping," and recently the best-seller "Gilead." She's a religious woman, though I can't read the Christian denomination from her writing. She does, in this book, spend a lot of time trying to reclaim John Calvin, so that may yield a clue.

But it's ultimately irrelevant. She's steeped in the Bibles, and laments the loss of their beauty and morality from out culture. I can appreciate that, and I agree with her, as long as the beauty and morality are recognized as her perspective and are not part of a political program. And I don't think she intends it to be so. She is pro-family, but not a rigid definer of family. She is anti-capitalist, and believes democracy and capitalism do not mesh well in America today. She basically comes off like a liberal Catholic.

What drew me to the book was the first chapter on Darwinism. She does what many on the right do -- conflate evolutionary theory with its social and political descendants, social Darwinism. She quotes some pretty ugly Darwin from "The Descent of Man" which made my blood boil. But by calling Darwin's and Spencer's and ultimately Hitler's political philosophy "Darwinism" is name-calling of the worst degree, which is more of the false framing and "Big Lie" for which the fascist Republicans who lead this country are becoming renowned.

A scientific materialist can have ethics of the highest standard, just as a Biblical literalist can be the most cold-blooded killer.These are just two different ways humans observe and explain the world, but while there are a majority of evolutionists who believe in God and a majority of Christians who believe in evolution, we are only hearing the most outrageous lies from the Christofascists these days. Fortunately we have the words of Professor Kenneth Miller of Brown, a Catholic biologist, and Judge Jones, to possibly bring us all closer to a resolution. I can only hope.

January 03, 2006 7:56 PM  
Blogger andrear said...

American Girl dolls are very nice(I think decent is the word if FOTF doesn't consider that word belonging to them) and very pricey(I guess that gives Mattel an alternative from cheap Barbie- although her many, many accessories can make up for it). American Girl Dolls are sold exclusively through catalogs and at the American Girl Stores in Chicago and NYC(the NYC store last week was packed and I saw lots of the American Girl doll shopping bags around midtown manhattan). Each doll has a story-with a book series- and as far as I know none are gay or have abortions or are even pregnant. Because American Girl dolls are so pricey - other companies have developed same size child dolls with clothing and accessory collections- at much less than the "real" American Girl dolls cost and craft stores and craft shows(and every church bazaar) have furniture and clothing
at much more reasonable prices for these 16-18 inch dolls. Now we all know about American Girl Dolls. If we would like to discuss GI Joe next, I have a friend whose business is nationwide sales of GI Joes.

January 04, 2006 9:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It sounds like the first Anon missed the scandal that truly began "emerging" yesterday. JackA is going to be singing for months.

But hey, maybe to some people it is scandalous for the NEA to spend money on "political purposes" such as lobbying "local government" officials for pay raises for their public school teacher members when they could be bribing elected officials with campaign contributions and extravagant golfing trips to Scotland instead.

Aunt Bea

January 04, 2006 9:09 AM  
Blogger andrear said...

Anon- Abramoff didn't give TTF any money.

Andrea Kline
VP, TTF

January 04, 2006 2:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Today we had a flurry of comments that were rude, personal, had to do with people's jobs, and were off the topic. And I deleted a bunch of them. You will notice that once the person came back and wanted to talk about the subject, I let him stay. It's not a point of view I'm banning, but ugly behavior."

This is untrue. No ugly posts. Just uncomfortable truths that Jim would rather not address. Many of the posts addressed Jim's inflammatory use of language. As we saw, his assumptions in the post were incorrect and based on his bias against orthodox believers. The people he called "sickening" and "disgusting" liars were actually telling the truth.

January 04, 2006 9:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"What drew me to the book was the first chapter on Darwinism. She does what many on the right do -- conflate evolutionary theory with its social and political descendants, social Darwinism. She quotes some pretty ugly Darwin from "The Descent of Man" which made my blood boil. But by calling Darwin's and Spencer's and ultimately Hitler's political philosophy "Darwinism" is name-calling of the worst degree, which is more of the false framing and "Big Lie" for which the fascist Republicans who lead this country are becoming renowned."

Dana, thanks for the tip. I'll try to get the book. You simply have to realize that Hitler's inspiration grew from Darwinism. It's really not much of a leap from saying "survival of the fittest is building a better species" to saying "let's help out". In light of the history of the twentieth century, how can still see materialistic rationalism as a hope for a better world? Man needs divine intervention.

"A scientific materialist can have ethics of the highest standard, just as a Biblical literalist can be the most cold-blooded killer.These are just two different ways humans observe and explain the world, but while there are a majority of evolutionists who believe in God and a majority of Christians who believe in evolution, we are only hearing the most outrageous lies from the Christofascists these days. Fortunately we have the words of Professor Kenneth Miller of Brown, a Catholic biologist, and Judge Jones, to possibly bring us all closer to a resolution. I can only hope."

I think I'll just leave this ugly name-calling alone.

January 04, 2006 9:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It sounds like the first Anon missed the scandal that truly began "emerging" yesterday. JackA is going to be singing for months.

Big deal. Won't stop the McCain-Rice ticket.

January 04, 2006 9:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"American Girl dolls are very nice(I think decent is the word if FOTF doesn't consider that word belonging to them) and very pricey(I guess that gives Mattel an alternative from cheap Barbie- although her many, many accessories can make up for it). American Girl Dolls are sold exclusively through catalogs and at the American Girl Stores in Chicago and NYC(the NYC store last week was packed and I saw lots of the American Girl doll shopping bags around midtown manhattan). Each doll has a story-with a book series- and as far as I know none are gay or have abortions or are even pregnant. Because American Girl dolls are so pricey - other companies have developed same size child dolls with clothing and accessory collections- at much less than the "real" American Girl dolls cost and craft stores and craft shows(and every church bazaar) have furniture and clothing
at much more reasonable prices for these 16-18 inch dolls. Now we all know about American Girl Dolls. If we would like to discuss GI Joe next, I have a friend whose business is nationwide sales of GI Joes."

Yeah, my daughters have American Girls too. They also go to the website. Be careful, though. If you put a space between the American and Girls, you get a porn site.

Still, anyone know if it's true that Girls, Inc supports abortion and lesbianism?

January 04, 2006 9:53 PM  
Blogger Dana Beyer, M.D. said...

Well, thank you, but no, I won't simply have to do anything. There was a racialist movement in the 19th century that was quite prevalent in Europe, and to which the Church paid obeisance. Darwin didn't begin it, it began during the Romantic movement of the early 1800's which was itself a reaction to the Enlightenment. Darwin was a product of his times, so no doubt his thinking was influenced by those times. That does not negate his grand sceintific insights about evolution, even if his theory of sexual selection is taking quite a beating these days. But that, again, is science. Evolutionary science marches on, and while the basic concepts are still there, the science is far, far more advanced since Mendel was rediscovered and genetics was born.

I still firmly believe that there would have been no Holocaust if not for 2000 years of Catholic and then Protestant anti-Semitism. And your desire for some kind of divine intervention doesn't make it so.

As for name-calling, where did I do that? I was very specific when I used the term Christofascist, and was not referring to anyone on this blog. It is an analog to the Islamofascists led by bin Laden.

January 04, 2006 9:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"As for name-calling, where did I do that? I was very specific when I used the term Christofascist,"

A word linking Christ's name to fascism is offensive. Even while being unjustly arrested, Christ said, "those who live by the sword will die by the sword."

I think your view of history is warped. The most vicious fascists of all were the twentieth century atheists. The exaltation of materialism led to some truly nasty behavior.

January 09, 2006 5:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

September 20, 2006 1:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

September 20, 2006 1:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

September 20, 2006 1:47 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home