Black Barbie Selling at Lesser Price than White Barbie at Wal-Mart
Black Barbie dolls were reportedly being sold less than half of the price of its White counterpart in selected Wal-Mart stores.
Due to this, several human-rights activists and non-profit groups called on Wal-Mart to be more sensitive in pricing of items to avoid complications.
World’s largest retail store chain Wal-Mart Stores Inc said that it is cutting the price of its Black Barbie doll named Ballerina Theresa by more than half of its White Barbie counterpart causing major “racism” accusations against the retailer.
The Black Barbie was earlier introduced in the 1940s by the company using dolls that were rejected or have already been used by children to gain insight into the perspective of races in having a “colored” doll.
According to reports, the two types of Barbie dolls hang side-by-side. One with the dark hair and brown skin were being sold at $3.00 while the White Barbie retains the original price of $5.93.
However, Wal-Mart spokesperson downplayed racism accusations saying that the lowering of the prices was part of the efforts to clear the stores shelves for new inventory.
“It’s part of the inventory management, which we commonly do here at Wal-Mart. So there’s nothing wrong with pricing items differently,” the spokesperson added.
But many of the critics will not let Wal-Mart to go that easily, saying that the retail giant should have been more sensitive in setting its pricing to such items that are common topics of racial debates.
“Wal-Mart by lowering the prices of the Black Barbie dolls has implicated devaluation of the dolls because of its color,” Northside Center for Child Development executive director Thelma Dye said.
NCCD is a New York-based non-profit organization founded by psychologists and segregation researchers.
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