Gender roles play a very important to America’s society. In case you haven’t noticed, men are always at the top, doing what they’re supposed to be doing -- making the big bucks for their big families while showing little to almost no emotion or passion towards their loved ones. Then there's women who play a not-so-equal role in the system: the submissive, needy little pests that stay at home all day just to care for the children. This is a system that our society must maintain, because without it, we would all just be wild animals that have the freedom to do whatever we please without any restrictions (and who wants that?). In order to prevent a future like this, we have to attack it at the roots -- childhood.
When a pregnancy is announced, the first question that is always asked is, “Is it a boy or a girl?” Of course, that’s the first thing you need to know about a pregnant woman because it’s not like it matters how she is feeling with a living, growing human inside her. Knowing the gender right away is the most important thing during a pregnancy, just so you know exactly what color bib to buy or if you should get Barbie dolls or G.I Joe action figures. In case there was an accident in which a parent bought a dress and sandals for a baby boy, I propose that there be a law where it is illegal to buy items and toys designated for a certain gender if your child isn’t of that gender. For example, parents wouldn’t be able to buy toy trains and cars if they were planning to gift it to their baby girl. With this law in place, we would be able to properly educate boys and girls about their role in society once they grow up. Girls need to keep their femininity, while boys need to strongly embrace their masculinity because otherwise, men and women would be out of place in the future. Without the proper gender training, then children would grow up thinking they can do anything they are willing to work hard for, which sounds almost apocalyptic.
According to a family that has raised their child gender neutral, the mother states, "whether my child wants to wear something pink or a shirt with Superman on it, it's all fine” (Hanna para. 6). However, it’s not just fine. We all know that Superman is clearly only for boys to enjoy and pink is a color only meant for girls. According to the mother, “gender neutrality is not about finding a gender neutral middle but about offering a child the option to be whoever they want to be—without feeling obliged to choose blue over pink” (Hanna para. 6). We obviously have to do something about the fact that parents are letting their children (who are barely even ten years old) run wild! We can’t continue to let our own children make decisions when they’re not mentally capable to deciding for themselves.
In the past few years, Marvel and DC Comics have been at the center of backlash because their toys and action figures have only featured male characters and superheroes. “The comparative absence of female characters in superhero merchandise isn’t new, of course – stereotypically, comic books and science fiction have primarily been marketed towards men and boys” (McNally para. 3). Well, duh. Action figures are meant for boys to play with, so why would they even need to create female characters if girls don’t need to play with them? This proves that boys are the only ones that buy action figures, so why would we need to make action figures that appeal to girls?
Even the article, 21 Reasons Why Gender Matters, claims that “Gender disorientation pathology will decrease life expectancy” (Adams 18). Further research shows there is a high mortality rate and lower life expectancy within the LGBT+ community. It is clearly very important to keep the gender roles and stereotypes or else, everyone else will just die. If we’re not careful, gender disorientation pathology will wipe out more and more Americans everyday, just like heart disease.
By implementing a law that prevents parents from buying toys outside of their child’s gender, we would be able to continue the strong gender roles that our society is built on. It is important for children to play with their assigned gender specific toys because they secretly teach each child the important role of what their gender is supposed to be. Many action figures, like Thor or G.I Joe, teach boys about their masculinity and how they need be more aggressive and dominant, because who else will put women in their place? Barbies would be able to teach girls about the beauty standards that they need to fulfill, or else no man will ever love them the way that Ken loves Barbie, which means they won’t be able to create families and continue the never-ending cycle. With these gender roles, parents will never have to worry about their child feeling out of place since they would just blend in with all the other boys and girls in their class. It is important to raise our children to believe that they have a specific role in society that they need to fulfill, because if they grow up believing that they can freely express themselves, the world might as well just end, right?