One Million Moms Calls for Boycott of American Girl Doll

by Kevin Schattenkirk

EDGE Media Network Contributor

Sunday February 21, 2021
Originally published on February 9, 2021

Kira Bailey doll
Kira Bailey doll  (Source:American Girl / Twitter)

One Million Moms is upset — again — this time with American Girl over the LGBTQ backstory for one of the company's doll.

A subsidiary of the American Family Association, designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, One Million Moms has its knickers in a twist over the 2021 Girl of the Year doll, named for 10-year-old Michigan girl Kira Bailey whose great aunts live in Australia and were finally able to marry when marriage equality passed down under in 2017.

With all the righteous indignation they usually muster, the homophobic organization declared that the doll's backstory is "unacceptable... as Christians, we know that even though something is legalized doesn't make it moral or right.

"American Girl could have chosen another storyline or characters to write about and remained neutral in the culture war. American Girl is attempting to desensitize our youth by featuring a storyline with two lesbian aunts," they added while urging consumers not to purchase the Kira Bailey doll. The hate group has started an online petition calling for American Girl to discontinue the doll.

American Girl is standing by the doll. Julie Parks, a company spokesperson, told Yahoo Life, "from the beginning, our 'Girl of the Year' characters have been designed to reflect girls's lives today and the realities of the times. As a brand, we've always strived to share the message that there's no 'magic recipe' for a family and that families can be made up of all kinds of ingredients — and each is unique and lovely. We know for girls who can directly relate to Kira's circumstances (i.e. a father who has passed away or a couple in a same-sex marriage), we're glad to show them that the make-up of one's family doesn't matter — it's still a family and that's all the counts. It's a sentiment we love at American Girl.

"Regarding any concerns about our commitment to racial equality, American Girl was built on a foundation of diversity and inclusion, and we remain committed to empowering the next generation of girls who will emerge as leaders who value empathy, equality and respect. We're proud of our reputation for having a wide range of inclusive and diverse dolls, accessories and content and we're excited about our upcoming plans that will allow for even more girls to see themselves reflected in our products."

Last month, One Million Moms found a humorous Cadbury Crème Egg ad "disgusting" and "gross" for featuring a male same-sex couple sharing one of the Easter season treats. The organization went on a tear last year, targeting Oreo over their partnership with PFLAG for Rainbow Cookies; Queer Eye's Jonathan Van Ness for wearing a leotard in an UberEats ad; Hallmark and their announced inclusion of LGBTQ storylines in the network's films; and Pixar over the company's short film "Out" with its gay character LeFou who — gasp! — dared to be attracted to Gaston from "Beauty and the Beast."

Kevin Schattenkirk is an ethnomusicologist and pop music aficionado.

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