Thanks Barbie, for ruining birthday parties. The company has apparently refused to make any more black Barbie supplies and will discontinue the current line. Karen Braithwaite, 40, of Harlem, was shocked when she couldn’t find black Barbie supplies for her 5-year-old daughter’s birthday party, so she launched a petition on Change.org for supplies to coincide with the company’s line of black Barbie dolls. Braithwaite said that the company told her in a conference call that they didn’t want an ethnic line for party supplies because retailers wouldn’t buy them, although Mattel spokesman said “most” of the company’s party supplies had not done well. Braithwaite, who collected over 14,200 signatures from all 50 states on her Change.org petition, called the answer “unacceptable,” saying “they need to realize Barbie has transcended from the blonde and blue-eyed girl from the 1950s.” Barbie was first launched in 1959, but it wasn’t until 1968 that she got a black friend. In 1980, the company started making black Barbie dolls, but it wasn’t until 2009 that she no longer had white physical features.
Over 14,000 signatures from 50 states have been collected.