From the press release for a very real item:
Berjuan Toys, the international toy company
renowned for its various high-quality doll lines, today announced its
commitment to bring one of its top international-selling dolls, The
Breast Milk Baby, to the U.S. market. …
The Breast Milk Baby
simulates the breast-feeding process by including a fashionable
halter-top that a young girl can put on like a vest and when she brings
the Breast Milk Baby doll’s mouth up to the pretty flower decoration on
the vest the doll makes a soft, suckling sound. The two flowers on the
halter are positioned where the nipples would be and when the mouth of
the doll is brought close to the embedded sensors in the flower, the
baby makes motions and suckling sounds.
Some critics say that the
doll over-sexualizing young girls or forcing girls to grow up too
quickly, but the company and those in support of the doll say that it
teaches young girls natural motherhood. …
“Breastfeeding isn’t just a
wonderful practice for the health of the infant. Mothers who breast feed
are more likely to return to their former weight before childbirth, and
have a reduced risk of breast cancer and osteoporosis for the rest of
their lives**,” Lewis documented. “The Breast Milk Baby will
revolutionize our nation’s attitudes to good infant health, while
letting little girls share in the wonder and magic of motherhood.”
Now, let me first off say that this is one of those items that the rest of the world is pretty much fine with and Americans absolutely lose their shit over. I’m not judging either way, although I feel that believing a doll can change a nation’s fear of breasts and their magic powers is naive, to say the least. But I would like to judge The Breast Milk Baby on several other factors:
1) It’s called The Breast Milk Baby, which is the creepiest, most straight-forward name possible. Changing the name to something “Hungry Hannah” or something would be far less disturbing to Americans, and in general.
2) The doll’s official site includes a video of the doll being “played with,” although only the audio worked for me. This means I stared at a black screen while I listened to a succession of robotic sucking sounds, then a baby crying, then a belch. IT WAS FUCKING TERRIFYING.
3) Okay, I will judge the concept a little — making little girls wear fake breasts for any reason totally skeeves me out. I understand the company’s point, and I think breast-feeding is a good thing and totally natural, and if they make dolls that pee and eat food and everything else breast-feeding probably should technically also be fine, but it still skeeves me out. Sorry.
4) The site has only three other articles on it: “Why Little Girls Need to Learn to Breast Feed” (also creepy), “God supports The Breast Milk Baby” (disturbing), and “Does Bill O’Reilly have ‘Cojones’?” (confusing).
5) Although Topless Roboteer Charlie P. sent me the tip, the actual, official press release was sent to me at my personal email address less than a minute later. Meaning someone thought The Breast Milk Baby was potentially newsworthy of Topless Robot. I very much doubt this article was what they had in mind. I’d feel bad, but the PR guy sent it to me. He obviously had known about TR‘s content, style and audience beforehand — he couldn’t possibly have sent it to me without knowing where the hell he was sending it, of course. So if he wants The Breast Milk Baby covered on TR, who am I to disagree?