I am beginning to really dislike the word “stereotype.” Not for what it is, but for the way it’s misused. I dislike how social crusaders distort the word and in turn, mar the accurate definition for gullible society and thus lead the mass of idiots down the wormhole of incomprehensibility and collective “offense.”
The two guys on this panel seem pretty realistic about the Mexican Barbie and allegations it is “stereotypical,” but Miller ricochets off on her feminist/racial tangent. The allegations that are cited as reasons the doll is stereotypical are dumb. Facts and patterns are not stereotypical. Pointing out the unspoken truths we know about group is stereotypical. The Mexican Barbie has a Chihuahua. Big deal. Chihuahua’s are a dog breed originating in Mexico. How is that a stereotype as opposed to a fact? Now if the Barbie came with a Hometown Buffet coupon booklet or if Mattel also released a “Barbie Low-rider Monte Carlo,” then it might be argued these are stereotypical because they are not exclusively Mexican props and are only intertwined with the Mexican persona in our communal knowledge (ie, unofficial observations). Stereotypes exist when we presume to predict a person’s behavior based on unofficial life observation we’ve made of the group they originate from. In fact, I would argue that “stereotypes” are not really bad or good. They simply are. Stereotypes are often true.
Rather, I disagree with the Stephanie Millerian social crusading treatment of the word to connote and infer that even factual truths must not be uttered or acknowledged. I’m surprised Miller didn’t take offense to the fact that the doll has black hair. Stereotype!
Actually, Stephanie Miller is a stereotype. Man-jawed, socially responsible, over-bearing no-nonsense wench.