Friday, September 19, 2003

Barbie – A Jewish American Princess?

The Committee for the Propagation of Virtue and Prevention of Vice, as the religious police are officially known in Saudi Arabia, lists the Barbie doll on a section of its Web site devoted to items deemed offensive to the conservative Saudi interpretation of Islam.

"Jewish Barbie dolls, with their revealing clothes and shameful postures, accessories and tools are a symbol of decadence to the perverted West. Let us beware of her dangers and be careful," said a message posted on the site.

Funny, I've always thought of Barbie as the ultimate "shiksa", a sort of uber-WASP. What with all that blonde hair and blue eyes, I would have thought her to be more a poster child for the new Aryan order.

The doll has been banned in the kingdom for over a decade, but they chose to remind their subjects on the anniversary of September 11, that Americans are decadent. I wonder sometimes if we didn't invade the wrong country.

But the most telling part of this story is the nature of Saudi society - racist, mean-spirited and frightfully intolerant. Why on earth would we consider these people to be our allies? It is nothing more than a feudal, medieval tyranny – the very revolution we supposedly had a revolution against another monarchial tyrant. Or has our addiction to Saudi oil so undermined our principles that we have become as decadent as they think we are?


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