The toy company Mattel is rolling out a new Muslim Barbie doll that wears an hijab and is modeled on Ibtihaj Muhammad, a U.S. Olympian fencer who won a bronze medal at the 2016 Olympics.
Muhammad told PEOPLE:
I think it’s revolutionary for Barbie to take a stand in this moment that we’re in—and I would say, as a country, to have a doll wear a hijab and be the first of its kind.
Muhammad tweeted her thanks to Mattel:
Thank you @Mattel for announcing me as the newest member of the @Barbie #Shero family! I’m proud to know that little girls everywhere can now play with a Barbie who chooses to wear hijab! This is a childhood dream come true 😭💘 #shero pic.twitter.com/py7nbtb2KD
— Ibtihaj Muhammad (@IbtihajMuhammad) November 13, 2017
However, the Friendly Atheists notes that some people on Twitter were outraged:
Sharia Mattel endorses the oppression of Women & Jew Haters!
Mattel announced Monday their newest Barbie will wear a Sharia Hijab & be modeled after Anti-Semitic Muslim Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad. pic.twitter.com/S3s6mTHaN3
— Amy Mek (@AmyMek) November 14, 2017
So instead of promoting women’s rights and freedom, @Mattel is promoting Hijab on Barbie dolls.
This is Indoctrination of young minds that Hijab is OK and not oppressive while it really isn’t a free choice for Muslim women. pic.twitter.com/XnMK05Q3oL
— Ashish (@Ak_Ashii) November 14, 2017