The Overreaction File – Racist Mexican Barbie Doll

Leave Barbie alone.

Leave Barbie alone.

Calm down people.

Not everything is racist.

There are more than 200 Barbies in Mattel’s Dolls of the World collection, all dressed in costumes that pay homage to different countries. The collection debuted in 1980 with Parisian, British, and Italian dolls and is aimed at kids and adult collectors alike. But the most recent versions, especially ones representing Latin America, are causing controversy online. The newest Mexico Barbie, released in June 2012, has been rediscovered by Barbie enthusiasts — and is being called out by critics recently for being offensive rather than educational. “@Mattel, maybe #MexicoBarbie should come with a taco instead of a chihuahua- you know, just to be really clear,” tweeted Jennifer Morales on Thursday. “Of course #MexicanBarbie comes with a passport!” @SavannahLime pointed out on Twitter. “She doesn’t want to be deported!”

Give me a break. There are some real matters of racism out there. That the Barbie has on a traditional dress (and I have seen dresses like this at Mexican celebrations) and has the very popular Chihuahua with her, is not one of them. If you look at the other dolls in the collection, representing other countries, they all wear traditional garments.

If they want to go after Barbie, there are better things to make a stink over.

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4 thoughts on “The Overreaction File – Racist Mexican Barbie Doll

  1. ericjbaker says:

    Yet again, I agree with you wholeheartedly. Once was a time when, if you wanted a Barbie, you had to get a white, blonde one, no matter the color of your skin and hair or that of the people around you. Now we have a choice, and there are still complaints.

    My company did a toy drive for underprivileged kids last December, and the local neighborhood we chose was mostly African-American and Hispanic. I wish Target had had some ethnic diversity in their Barbie aisle! I ended up with the one vaguely Hispanic one they had on the peg hook. The rest of them looked like they were head for MTV’s Spring Break circa 1988.

    Progress comes in fits and starts, folks. Make the best of it, not the worst.

    This reminds me of the hilariously wrong-headed review I read on Amazon regarding the Django Unchained DVD. One woman (who self-identified as white) gave the movie a bad score because Kerry Washington’s skin is too light! Apparently, this means that Tarantino is sending a hurtful message to African-American girls that darker skin is bad.

    For cryin’ out loud lady, that’s not how casting works. Tarantino picked Kerry Washington because 1. She’s a great actress and was perfect in the role, 2. She’s popular right now, and 3. She flippin’ stunning, and you need a flippin’ stunning woman in that part. If her skin were darker, she’d be just as gorgeous. Anyway, to that reviewer, please stop trying so hard. here’s a movie with broad appeal to white and black audiences, and that doesn’t happen enough in H-Wood.

    • Earnest Harris says:

      Yeah some times people just want to complain. Sometimes there are things worthy of our complaints and criticism, but when we single out silly things like this or the color of Kerry Washington’s skin, we make it hard for some people when real issues happen. By the way, I still have to see that movie. I’m way behind on movies. And I love movies.

      • ericjbaker says:

        I don’t know if you are a Tarantino fan. I love his films, but I get why some people don’t. Anyway, I saw it in a packed theater, and no one so much as uttered a peep or shifted in his seat for three hours. I’ve called it the first post-racial movie about racism.

      • Earnest Harris says:

        I’m actually not a big Tarantino fan, though I think he is incredibly talented and brings a truly unique style. Some of his violence is not my cup of tea. But I do want to see Django (though I have been warned about the violence). I think it is an important movie because of the subject.

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