Did you know that Mattel has a new Mexico Barbie coming out? At first I thought, hell yeah! I was so excited. I grew up on Barbie. I love her and so do my girls. Now, I’ll have a Mexican Barbie to share with my little girls. A Barbie that represents their culture, their heritage, their mother and themselves. Thank you Mattel!
Then I saw Mexico Barbie.
Mexican Barbie is dressed in a traditional Mexican folkloric dress; a fluorescent pink dress with multicolored ribbons. She comes with a Chihuahua dog under her arm and in the box is also a passport, you know so she’s documented. After all, we don’t want Mexico Barbie in “our” country unless she is here legally with up to date papers.Something about Mexico Barbie does not sit well with this Mexican.
I know I should be thankful that there is even a Barbie representing Mexicans at all; what with Hispanics only making up 17% of the population as of 2011. After all, there are only 51.9 million of us. What’s the magic number to be recognized enough to deserve a Barbie in your honor these days?
This Mexico Barbie annoys me because firstly, nobody wears that outfit in Mexico, unless they are part of a folkloric dancing troupe performing at a festival or on stage. Secondly, we don’t all wear bright colors and we’re not all-loud, attention seeking people. Okay, we are loud and we’re passionate people. We talk with our hands and we are colorful but damn it we don’t all wear fluorescent colors and I hate to break it to you but the only time I’ve ever seen a Chihuahua being carried it’s never been by a Mexican.
What’s with the damn Chihuahua? I’ve hated those yappy little bastards since Taco Bell shoved them down our throats in their campaign. For the record, no self respecting dog from Mexico would be caught dead eating fake Mexican food. Yes, I know Chihuahua dogs originate from Mexico and are named for the state of Chihuahua but not every Mexican owns them or even likes them.
My daughters are Latinas. They both have blonde hair and blue eyes. They are not stereotypical. The point is the Mexican American population is so diverse; we come in all shapes, sizes and colors. We have blondes, brunettes and redheads. None of us wear the folkloric dresses on a daily basis and most of us don’t own Chihuahuas.
Don’t even get me started on the passport. Was that a dig at the whole documented workers conversation? A nod to immigration legislation? I suppose at least this way Mexican Barbie won’t get hounded by immigration or deported. I’m curious to see what the name on the passport reads? Bertha Maria Consuela Conchita Guadalupe Reyes Cruz?
I guess I should be glad that they didn’t put a teeny tiny bottle of tequila in the box or fill the box with 6 children or throw a Comal in there and some tortillas or tamales. Is she wearing a gold Virgen de Guadalupe medallion? Holding a rosary?
I’m glad Mattel is making an effort to recognize the Mexican population and making a doll that they think looks like every little Mexican girl in the world, only it doesn’t. If Mattel is going to make this Barbie, I’d like to see, Mexican Lawyer Barbie and Mexican Doctor Barbie and Mexican Judge Barbie. How about the first Mexican-American Female President of the United States Barbie? Let’s make it a positive thing for our children, not a doll that perpetuates stereotypes that are used as cages for our little girls for years to come.
I say Mattel got it wrong. Fuck the Mexico Barbie.