Tuesday, March 3, 2009


When my daughters were little, we took them to a store in the mall called “Build-A-Bear” where they could construct their own personalized teddy bear from the ground up. It was cute. It was make-believe. It was harmless.

Or was it?

When I was little, you got the teddy bear that you got. You could choose to have one or not to have one, but you didn’t have a choice of “building” it to suit your own personal tastes.

While I certainly do not think there is anything sinister about “Build-A-Bear”, the concept of it is perhaps not so healthy, as it breeds an expectation – at a very young age – that we should have everything exactly as we want it, right down to the nitty-gritty details. And, of course, “Build-A-Bear” is not the only thing around these days that reinforces that expectation.

What happens when these little kids who have been “trained” (for lack of a better word) to expect things exactly as they want them to be grow up and start dealing with things far more important than a teddy bear? Should we expect that their expectations should suddenly & mysteriously change?

Should we be surprised that they would see nothing wrong at all about “designing” their own children if given the opportunity? Why shouldn’t they be able to choose the sex of their child, pick their eye color, select the shade of their skin, and determine what kind of hair they should have?

After all, they built their own teddy bears. Is this really so different?

Designer baby row over US clinic

I would suggest it is very different, but then again, I never built my own bear. Maybe I just don't get it.

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