If Riley, the star of this video, is any indication of how intelligent, discerning, and outspoken the next generation is going to be, we have some hope for progress in this world.
The video of Riley pacing the girls’ aisle at a toy store has been making the rounds online for the last few days. The clip features her fuming over why companies only sell pink toys and princesses to girls, and superhero toys to boys. Her utter frustration is loud and clear, telling her dad, “It wouldn’t be fair for all the girls to buy princesses and all the boys to buy superheroes!”
He presses her, asking why this happens, and she responds, “The companies who make these try to trick the girls into buying the pink stuff instead of stuff that boys want to buy, right?”
“But you can buy either, right? And boys can buy either,” her dad reasons. “If boys want to buy pink, they can buy pink, right?”
“Yeah!” she squeals in frustration. “So then why do all the girls have to buy princesses?” She slaps a glittery girls’ toy box for added effect.
The Jane Dough pointed to a debate on Slate about whether toys should be separated by gender, and we have to agree—in this day and age, it makes far more sense to separate toys by type. (One British toy store has already taken this advice.) After all, haven’t some of the best toys from our childhood been the ones that are democratic and inclusive? Think Play-Doh, yo-yos, the Slip ‘n Slide, the Rubik’s Cube. And yet walk down any girls’ aisle of a toy store and you’re bombarded by pink, glitter, dolls, babies and princess gear.
“Some girls like superheroes, some girls like princesses! Some boys like superheroes, some boys like princesses! So why do all the girls have to buy pink stuff and all the boys have to buy different-colored stuff?” Riley asks.
Her dad sighs in frustration: “That’s a good question, Riley.”