PAWTUCKET, R.I. (CBS Connecticut) - A New Jersey teenager has filed a petition on Change.org in the hopes of encouraging the CEO of Hasbro to make Easy-Bake Ovens less exclusionary of young boys.
According to the petition, 13-year-old McKenna Pope of Garfield, N.J. decided to reach out to the toy purveyor in a public way when her 4-year-old brother requested an Easy-Bake Oven for Christmas.
She and her family noticed the feminine themes associated with the product when they began to search for his gift, and wanted to encourage Hasbro to change their marketing in an effort to help the public “understand that cooking and baking is for everyone.”
“I believe your product, the Easy-Bake Ultimate Oven, a favorite of mine as a young child, promotes gender roles in society,” the petition states. “Also, it’s ‘girls’ coloration of purple and pink make it seem as though cooking is ‘girly,’ which it is not by any means.”
The petition adds, “Please, Hasbro, I urge you to include males on your packaging, and feature your product in less gender specific colors, such as red, green, or blue.”
The official petition is addressed to Brian Goldner, the CEO of Hasbro, as well as other marketing and public relations executives at the toy manufacturer.
As of Wednesday morning, 28,171 people had signed the petition. A reported 6,829 signatures were still needed to reach the goal of 35,000 signatures.
“My little brother has always loved cooking,” she explained of her motivation in a self-written note on the petition’s web page. “Being in the kitchen is his favorite out of school activity, and he yearns to have the opportunity to cook on his own, or at least with limited help.”
Hasbro, based in Pawtucket, R.I., is the manufacturer of the toy oven initially introduced in 1963 by a company called Kenner.