Wednesday, February 11, 2009


remember when i didn't want to get mad at freakonomics? right.

so they want to know whether mcdonalds asks you if you want a boy or girl toy.
How do you feel about these questions? McDonald’s has to balance giving detailed information about toy promotions that change every few weeks against the difficulties of training and wanting to keep the line moving. But the lawyer in me also notes that several states prohibit sex discrimination at public accommodations.
lots of comments. some of them upsetting. sigh. first of all, yes, you are discriminating if you define "girl toys" and "boy toys" [and it's easy not to], and the fact that there are girl and boy sections in toy stores and clothing stores doesn't prove non-discrimination. it proves that discrimination is pervasive.

sure, many girls want the doll and many boys want the hot wheels. but that's not all it is. i worked in the baby section of a department store, guys, and the only things that might pass for gender-neutral, even for INFANTS, were the winnie-the-pooh line of sleepers. so, people who shopped there were gender-izing their babies. probably not because the babies liked it. seriously, people would come in and be like, "umm. we don't know the sex of the baby yet." and i'd be like, "have you considered the winnie-the-pooh sleepers? otherwise, decide if your fetus likes flowers or trucks."

possible reasons for this: 1. people want strangers to know if their baby is a boy or a girl. 2. retailers want people to buy new clothes for their opposite-gender future babies. but still, how can you define what girls should be and what boys should be and then claim that you're not discriminating? how can you say that it's fine for you, or for your kids, and so it has to be fine for everyone?


and, hey. speak from the i. and i will say, now, that i like to eat happy meals, and i've never been asked what kind of toy i want. as a child, i liked both barbies and ninja turtles, and mom usually asked for two different toys so brother and i wouldn't steal each other's... [that is, so i wouldn't steal his when mine broke. sigh.]

i'm also mad that people [again, commenters] think questions on the citizenship interview are funny. sigh. it's hard to get citizenship here, guys. and it's all so odd, anyway. it's easy to be born here [you know, for me] but hard to get in... it's easy to have a baby, but not so easy to adopt one...

anyway, i've worked out my issues. i'm mad at the commenters. freakonomics is apparently ready for all kinds of comments, but then, i guess that's the process...

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