It’s amazing what one tweet can do.
A couple months ago, an Ohio mom’s tweet went viral, after she pointed out how ridiculous she thought it was to separate kids toys into “girls” and “boys” categories:
— Abi Bechtel (@abianne) June 1, 2015
So many people responded to the tweet that Target took notice. The corporate giant listened and responded. In a press release this week, Target announced they will be moving away from gender-based signs:
“We never want guests or their families to feel frustrated or limited by the way things are presented. Over the past year, guests have raised important questions about a handful of signs in our stores that offer product suggestions based on gender. In some cases, like apparel, where there are fit and sizing differences, it makes sense. In others, it may not… we know that shopping preferences and needs change and, as guests have pointed out, in some departments like Toys, Home or Entertainment, suggesting products by gender is unnecessary.”
If you think about it, it’s a little ridiculous that we force these stereotypes on children and families. Can you imagine if other categories were as gendered as toys? Imagine going to the home improvement section and seeing women’s and men’s tools. That would be ridiculous. Pink women’s tool sets do exist, but fortunately they are more novelty and less the norm:
Thank God this tool set comes in pink, otherwise my lady brain & I were just gonna try to fix my toilet with lipstick pic.twitter.com/Udstithyoq
— Samantha Escobar (@myhairisblue) July 1, 2015
I have a four-year-old son and a two-year-old daughter. Of course, my daughter has second-child syndrome, with the majority of her clothes and toys being hand-me-downs. You know what? She loves her Superman shirt and her Batman figurines. She also loves Rapunzel. My son loves his Superheros. He also loves feeding our Baby Alive doll. Kids can love both. It’s okay.
You may think, “it’s no big deal” – and you would be right. It is no big deal. Let the toys exist together. Nothing is going to happen to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles if they share an aisle with Barbie. Funny enough, I bought my daughter a Barbie mermaid last week and my son a TNNT van, and my daughter was screaming TURTLES! the entire way home. You may be surprised how vast the interests of your little girls and boys are.
More from the Target press release: “We heard you, and we agree. Right now, our teams are working across the store to identify areas where we can phase out gender-based signage to help strike a better balance. For example, in the kids’ Bedding area, signs will no longer feature suggestions for boys or girls, just kids. In the Toys aisles, we’ll also remove reference to gender, including the use of pink, blue, yellow or green paper on the back walls of our shelves. You’ll see these changes start to happen over the next few months.”
So many people are pissed about this. It’s truly amazing. Here are some comments posted to Target’s Facebook page:
We’re not driving through your parking lot anymore, Target. Take that, suckas.
It’s Caitlyn Jenner, so that would be the “Caitlyn Jenner” train.
This person hates political correctness. And punctuation.
Just cancelled my Redcard, because when God created man and woman, he totally had their color schemes chosen, too. Duh. God doesn’t like yellow. Or green.
There is no reason why a boy needs to feel like he’s entering an “all-girl” zone if he wants to pick up a doll. Similarly, there is no reason why a little girl should feel like she’s entering an “all-boy” zone if she wants to look at a Superhero. Removing gendered marketing takes the pressure off kids – and that’s a good thing.