No, these are not the measurements of my ideal woman (I do not mind a piece of that bubble-34 or 35 might be acceptable for the hips). These are the measurements of Barbie, were she a real person. Many voices cried unfair when these hypothetical measurements were first determined several years ago, and I agree.
The modern Barbie's waist is much wider than her early predecessor. With this change it is less likely that young girls will reach for the stars. Barbie's widening waist sets a lower, unfair standard and is indubitably a contributing factor to America's obesity problems.
Still, conspiracy theorists, who believe even today's Barbie sets an unreachable image for the female youth, abound. Their arguments fall apart under the scrutiny of even a cataract-laden eye. First, the original Barbie did not have a belly button. Yet, female teens of the time did not go about slitting their own navels. Indeed, surveys from that era indicate that the incidence of belly buttons in the female population then did not vary much from today. Any belly button variance over time is more likely attributable to the tale of Dr. Seuss' Sneetches than to Barbie.
Secondly, Barbie's measurements are not really so unattainable. For evidence, one does not need to look much farther than a hardworking group of highly paid, professional women: pornstars. Jenna Jameson comes close to the Barbie mold, and others in the industry might as well (this author would not know such things). And for those who scornfully cite the use of breast implants in the industry I ask you, if you one day contract Alzheimer's and have access to the cure, won't you take it? Having small breasts is like having Alzheimer's.
If anything, society should emphasize Barbie's physique; the alternative is to promote her mental prowess. Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton's mothers must have taken this latter approach to parenting. Their daughters are living in a Barbie world along with so many other starlets. Parental-sponsored implants could have led to better lives. Take Britney Spears. Sure, one can undress her anywhere, but she is not protected by plastic: that's latex's job. Even in Britney's case of a successful upbringing, though, her mother would have done well to have further emphasized the importance of her breasts. Perhaps, this would have prevented her from flashing us her chimichanga, which, unlike the Mexicans, Americans tend to wrap too loosely.
Such antics make us value those who have been able to resist the temptations of Barbiefication. Girls Gone Wild (GGW) brings us back to the wholesome days of America-when pornography was as easy as A (ass), B (boob), and C (um, right). At least GGW gives us a clear "WARNING" before flashing us chimichangas. For a time there was controversy surrounding these videos, but fortunately, Snoop Dogg and his style were able to clear the brand's name. GGW encourages young women to get the Barbie out of their systems, and capturing them on video while they do so preserves precious memories.
As the debate over Barbie rages on, it becomes more apparent that perhaps, parents are actually the ones who can help daughters shape their ideas about image, beauty, and appropriate behavior. Anorexia and bulimia can be prevented. In those cases that it is too late for prevention, the one positive that Barbie teaches us is that accessories are the way to a woman's heart. A pair of stiletto heels should stab the eating disorder right of your daughter. If that does not work, remember that the Chinese are a wise people-so, forget the daughter and concentrate on a son. A G.I. Joe body is attainable with just a few steroids. Or better yet, Ken is even more attainable, and he's the one that gets the Barbie.