Tesco has defended its decision to label a children’s chemistry set a boys’ toy, despite criticism from gender equality campaigners.
Campaigners from Let Toys Be Toys, an online pressure group that is calling on retailers not to limit children’s development by promoting separate “boys’” and “girls’” toys, said that Tesco’s labelling of its “Action Science Chemistry Set” was sexist.
A bunch of people with too much time on their hands and an overweening desire to run everyone’s life right down to the most minute detail.
A Tesco spokesman responded on Twitter: “Toy signage is currently based on research and how our customers tell us they like to shop in our stores” adding that “further research” would be commissioned later in the year to ensure “an up-to-date reflection of customers’ thinking”.
I hope that doesn’t mean they are giving in to this sort of fruitcake, but it would never surprise me if they were…
“I do wonder what that research shows. Perhaps you ask a group of customers about every toy, to assign gender-appropriateness to it. Surely you care more than that, though? Surely, you see it as your own role to allocate each of your toys to boys or girls? I bet your research simply asks “Do you want toys grouped by gender?” so you can selflessly keep the important responsibility of ensuring girls are kept away from that awful, boy-ridden science ‘thing’.
I take such consolation from knowing that, somewhere, Tesco employees are helping to perpetuate gender stereotypes for the rest of us. I bet it’s a crack team of sociologists and behavioural psychologists, and not just a few, bored administrators mindlessly allocating science to boys and anything pink or kitchen-related to girls.
Or perhaps I’m wrong and you’re just a simple-minded corporate behemoth without the institutional intelligence or social sensibilities to do what’s right in this situation and follow the lead of Boots, for example. But hey! I’m just a girl. What do I know?“
Clearly, it means you ‘know’ that the very best thing for your profession us to be seen as a whiny, insecure control freak obsessed with other peoples’ lives.
And maybe we’ll indulge the scientists with their obsession with ‘social sensibilities’ when they get a wiggle on with inventing something useful…