This piece from Reuters is too good to pass up. I quote in full:
OSLO (Reuters) - A Swedish bikini-style top for toddlers will be withdrawn from sale amid criticism from a Norwegian cabinet minister that bra-like clothing was inappropriate for small girls.Now, what on earth does Norwegian independence have to do with this debate on baby bikinis? Or for that matter, with the misogyny of the pamphlets produced by Ikea? God only knows. Perhaps a century of independence drives home the point that issues of gender and women's rights have had a chance to diverge among the scandinavians?
"It is remarkably daft to make bra-like bikinis for one-year-olds," Norwegian Minister of Children and Family Affairs Laila Daavoey was quoted as telling the Norwegian daily Verdens Gang Thursday.
"This is a terrible commercialization of childhood. Children are not women. Bikinis on small children are a way of linking children to sexuality. We must say 'No' to this," she said.
Swedish clothes maker Lindex said it would withdraw one design of top, meant for girls aged 1-2, after an internal review.
"It's a bit too similar to an adult top so we are choosing to withdraw it," spokeswoman Ulrika Danielson told Norway's NRK public radio. She said the decision was made independently of the Norwegian criticism.
Earlier this month, Norwegian Prime Minister Kjell Magne Bondevik criticized Swedish furniture maker IKEA for showing few women assembling flat-packed goods in cartoon instruction leaflets. IKEA agreed to depict more women.
Norway is celebrating 100 years of independence from Sweden in 2005. [emphasis added]
We need more scandals like this one. It would be healthier than the crap we have to deal with here at home.