As a child, I had mounds of Barbies. I loved them as if they were my children, and I would say that, single-handedly, they were my favorite toy of all time. (Many of you might agree.) But in recent years, Barbie's gotten a bad rap: she's not realistically proportionate, she "set a distorted ideal of beauty to children," and wasn't racially diverse. (I would have loved to have had a Barbie that looked like my best friend, who is Hispanic!)
I can tell you a few things about my experience with Barbie as a child. No, I didn't think about how beautiful she was; I didn't worry about her proportions being completely unrealistic. She wasn't real, after all! With this doll, I was able to express everything my imagination could come up with. Whether I was a princess looking over my soon-to-be kingdom, pretending to be Kelly Kapowski, or deciding to pack up and move to Hollywood, these make-believe scenarios weren't just in my head — I could act them out and make them feel real.
And Barbie is doing a few things to remedy the issues I mentioned. First (and most importantly), Mattel has expanded the Barbie family so that the dolls encompass different races: African-American, Latina, and Asian. And now, the've released this video to remind everyone the core behind what Barbie is about: using your imagination.
Try watching the video without smiling — you won't be able to. Seeing the reactions of the adults as these girls step up to the plate to teach a class, teach a soccer team, give a museum tour, and help ailing animals is sure to warm your heart.