Can you imagine the insolence of someone throwing a gift back at you? Social niceties dictate that when a gift (even if not quite the one you hoped for) is presented, you smile and graciously thank the giver. How disrespectful to state clearly that this is not the desired object and that no attention will be paid to the gift until the correct one is substituted.
From a sociological stand point, gender stereotyping has been useful for constraining women to roles that are not threatening to the patriarchical view of what is “suitable” for women. And the training starts early. Pink because you are a girl? Blue for boys? This arbitrary color assignation has not always been so. This is an example of a purely societal construct that may seem insignificant, but in reality, this random color dichotomy can be the first step in a path that seeks to keep the sexes confined to certain paths and mired in a limiting, often self-negating life role. How can it possibly be healthy to tell boys that they are not supposed to cry or express their feelings? How can anyone justify pushing toys on young girls that may later lead to actual health problems?
Yet, this push to “genderize” everything is enormously beneficial not only to those who want to keep “men men and women women” but also for those who profit from the stereotyping. The Evil Empire of Disney, as I like to call it, has benefited astoundingly with its suffocating “princess” trend that has engulfed so many little girls. As a Latina mother, myself the product of a very gender stereotyped upbringing, I am analytical, cautious about the toys I purchase for my children. Machismo in all its forms is banned from my house. Do we not owe all children the same?