Facebook movement urging Mattel to create a bald Barbie doll to support children with cancer

Thursday, January 12, 2012 - 5:35pm

She's more than just a staple on toy store shelves - Barbie is an icon.

Her constantly changing look has reflected American history and the evolving role of women in society.

Now a movement on Facebook is calling for Barbie's next look to be bald.

A New Jersey mother who is battling cancer and a California mom whose daughter has leukemia started the Facebook page before Christmas and hoped for a couple thousand hits by New Year's.

What they got was thousands more than expected, and an outpouring of support.

Experts say the doll could also help children who don't have the disease -- but have family members who do.

"It will be a nice representation and acknowledgment of a group of children who are so courageous and brave and manage with the really debilitating effects of chemotherapy," say pediatric psychologist Dr. Cori Liptak.

Trish Rohr is the founder of Rohr Rockstars, a nonprofit that supports the educational needs of children facing cancer.

Inspired by her husband's battle with the disease, her work with kids who have cancer has shed new light on what it means to be bald: It's not the disease, it's the attempt to fight it.

"It's our body's sign that we're launching this battle, so I think using toys to convey that message is really powerful," she says.

Mattel hasn't responded to the Facebook request, but the bald Barbie idea is catching on almost as quickly as the doll did over 50 years ago.

The makers of the Facebook page have not forgotten about boys.

They're also petitioning for a bald G.I. Joe.

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