Recently there was a story about 9-year old Grayson Bruce who was bullied for bringing a My Little Pony lunch sack to school. His North Carolina school responded by asking the child to leave the bag at home as it was a “trigger for bullying.”
In this industry we talk a lot about gender, gender-based marketing, and the idea of gender-neutral products. We talk about how girls are often more willing to play with boys toys than boys are to play with girls toys – and Grayson’s situation is a glaring example as to why. Was it worse because it was a little boy using a brand marketed to girls? Maybe. But I’d guess that if a little girl showed up to that school with a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles lunchbox I’m sure some of her classmates might look at her a little funny too. Regardless, the fact that children are bully due to gender-based marketing is sad.