American Cancer Society Blogger Apologizes for Bald Barbie Flub
(ATLANTA) — One unlikely person apologized Wednesday after catching the wrath of the nearly 130,000 people who have joined a social media campaign urging Mattel to make a bald Barbie.
Andrew Becker, a director of media relations for the American Cancer Society, drew ire after posting a controversial blog post on the American Cancer Society’s website called “Bald Barbie Demand Is an Over-Reach.” In the post, Becker said the Bald Barbie movement could “do more harm than good for kids and parents.”
“If they are mass marketed, many of these dolls will end up in the hands of girls who luckily aren’t likely to be touched by cancer in themselves or their mothers. But could they end up being terrorized by the prospect of it in a far outsized proportion to their realistic chances? There is no reason to create this sort of fear,” Becker wrote.
Outraged supporters of the Bald Barbie campaign took to the cancer society’s Facebook page, demanding that Becker be fired. Someone named Chanda called Becker’s blog post “callous talk.”
“There are little girls and little boys out there feeling like they no longer fit in — they no longer have children in their class they can relate to,” she wrote.
Becker took down his offending blog Wednesday and replaced it with an apology.
“When I set out to write, I wanted to raise questions about activism and social media around disease. I did not mean to imply that I or the American Cancer Society believes that sick children are not important,” he wrote.
But Becker’s response did not appease.
“He does not know who he messed with,” a commenter named Mindy wrote. “An apology on their blog is not enough. We won’t stop until there is equity in funding for childhood cancer, and this man has a new job!”
Becker told ABC News in an email that he prefers to let his apology statement speak for itself.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio