No barbies for Iranian girls

Filed under: Alcohol & Drugs, Media, Toys

Barbie, the iconic American fashion doll, is destroying the youth and the culture of Iran. So says Ghorban Ali Dori Najafabadi, anyway. Najafabadi is Iran's Prosecutor General and he wants restrictions on the importation of Western toys in order to preserve Iran's Islamic culture. Iran is, according to Najafabadi, the third biggest importer of toys in the world.

It's not just Barbie, of course; Batman, Spiderman, and Harry Potter are subjects of Najafabadi's ire as well. "The irregular importation of such toys, which unfortunately arrive through unofficial sources and smuggling, is destructive culturally and a social danger," he wrote in a letter to Iranian Vice President Parviz Davoudi.

Iran requires women to be very conservative in their dress and Barbie, of course, does not meet that expectation. There have been attempts to create alternatives that do conform to Islamic law, but they have not been successful. "We need to find substitutes to ward off this onslaught, which aims at children and young people whose personality is in the process of being formed," Mr Najafabadi said.

I'm not sure if it is possible to prevent the influx of Western culture or even if they should even try, but I suspect ultimately it will be the children that will decide what sort of toys they really want to play with.

Banned in Saudi Arabia(click thumbnails to view gallery)

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.