Of all the popular children’s toys out there, I’ve always thought Legos were one of the more gender-neutral. As they can be used to make ponies, castles, houses, pirate ships, or pretty much anything else you want (I remember constructing all sorts of alien creatures out of them as a kid) it’s hard to pin them down as specifically “masculine” or “feminine.” Or is it?
Apparently, I’ve been wrong all these years, or so my latest progressive person newsletter tells me. According to Change.org, Lego has been marketing its toys exclusively to boys in recent years, but has just decided to open up the “girly” market with a new line of “Legos” specifically for girls. I put “Legos” in quotation marks because they do not sound like real Legos at all:
The new line is called LadyFigs, and it’s made up of busty, pastel-colored figurines that come with interests like shopping, hair-dressing, and lounging at the beach. The uninspired toys even come with pre-assembled environments — so there is no assembly (or imagination) required.
Isn’t the whole point of Lego blocks that you use them to build things out of? And if a girl is into dolls, wouldn’t she rather have an actual doll instead of some shitty little plastic one? This seems ill thought out in so many ways. The most offensive part, obviously, being the fact that Lego insists that it has never before been a toy played with by girls:
LEGO is stubbornly holding its ground and told Business Week that the LadyFigs launch is a “strategic” move to “reach the other 50 percent of the world’s children,” as if girls have never been part of LEGO’s focus.
Why would Lego want to alienate so much of its potential customer base like this? How can their “research” not tell them that girls have been playing with Legos since they were first invented? As one signer of the petition said, “LEGO already has a product for girls. It’s called LEGO.” I hope this matter gets cleared up soon, otherwise I’ll be forced to plan to buy Tinker Toys for my friends’ hypothetical kids, and everyone knows Tinker Toys are kind of crappy.