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When is a Toy Not a Toy and Just a Doll?

I always thought a Doll was a Toy, but according to the U.S. Government that was a billion dollar mistake.

The new Marvel Comics Ghost Rider 2 movie is still in theaters.

The much-anticipated Marvel Comics Avengers movie is on the horizon. Plus, the Marvel Comics Spiderman Broadway show, New Marvel Comics X-men Animated TV show and Marvel Comics Superhero Video game are popular now as well.

Marvel Comics action figures have been selling like hotcakes in the USA and worldwide. However, I have recently learned some disturbing almost humorous news in regards to these characters figures in regards to a legal ruling by the U.S. Government concerning them.

I found it funny that in a January ruling by the U.S. Federal Court, it appears that “mutants and superheroes are not human!” This is not I saying this. This is what the Federal Justices said. This was an ongoing war with the U.S. Customs department that has lasted years and cost tens of thousands of dollars in lawyer fees to come up with legal mumbo jumbo that will save Marvel Industries millions upon millions of dollars by segregating a lot of their population with extreme prejudice, especially with Avengers versus X-men Day festivities scheduled for Comic Stores across the globe on April 3.

It seems that the import or export taxes on a “doll” is over 12 percent, while the taxes on a “toy” are less than seven percent. The tariff on a doll in many other countries is an additional 2 percent and on a toy less than half a percent. Marvel employed a team of legal eagles for over ten years so they can travel from court to court in an effort to get many of their figures and products classified differently in an effort to save a SHIELD hellicarrier full of money.

Apparently according to a Federal Court and a bunch of judges, a doll is a nearly authentic facsimile or replica of a human being.

A toy is a representation of a being that can be close to human, though not exact, or animal or other playful product. This really seems like a marketing scam or advertising ploy, and more in respected Patch blogger Lauren Lev’s area of expertise.

What really has me rolling my eyes and shaking my head with sadness is the fact that a U.S. Federal Court was asked to look at each figure in the Marvel Universe and asked which is considered human and which are not, because they look different or have senses or abilities beyond those of mortal man. The results were staggering.

What I can’t seem to wrap my head around is the fact that this whole thing smacks of racial prejudice with blurred lines being used for seclusion and intolerance based on appearance and or abilities. I know what you are going to say. “Bill, they are imaginary characters!” However I think that this has a much deeper meaning.

I do not think that it is because I grew up in Brooklyn in the 1960’s surrounded by racial prejudice and inequality. I do not think that it is because I’m Jewish and grew up with a grandmother that escaped a German concentration camp who hid a numbered tattoo on the forearm with long sleeves even in the sweltering summer heat.

This just seems the wrong message to send future generations by our courts. It is what my grandmother would say leads to pogroms. Now, some may say that I am over-thinking this.

Here is how international trade experts Sherry Singer and Indie Singh explained it. "Humans generally have a pair of eyes, ears, breasts, arms, legs and normal abilities that are represented in dolls. Other features or deviations make them non-humans and are classified as toys. White, black, brown skin equals human, also a doll, okay, high taxes, valued.

Blue fur or green scales equals mutant, also a toy, not okay, low taxes, cheap. GI Joe or Ken equals doll, while X-men’s Night crawler or Beast is a toy. Peter Parker with camera is a doll. Spiderman with webbing is a toy.

Steroid taker is a doll; Super soldier serum taker is toy. Blue-eyed Benjamin Grimm is a doll; the blue-eyed Fantastic Four’s Thing is a toy. WWE John Cena is a doll. the Incredible Hulk is a toy. Neil Armstrong in an Astronaut suit is a doll and Tony Stark in an Iron Man suit is a toy.

They had to catalog each member of the Marvel Universe in they presented for, to make a distinction as to which they were. The analogy they presented here was just because a human has a power or ability or trait that is not deemed “normal” like shooting laser beams from their eyes, icicles from their fingers, tiny wings on their ankles they are separate and seemed valued less. This meant big bucks in savings to the Marvel Corporation. Do you see why this is kind of disturbing?

After a protracted battle royal, the United States Court of International Trade agreed in December of 2011, with human attorney, Joe Liebman stated, “.... fabulous people with extraordinary and unnatural physical and mental powers, whether good or evil, are not representative of real human beings and should be classified as different and treated as such.”

I hate to say it, but I think I just heard Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King roll over in their graves. When someone refers to my past attempts at purchasing superhero figures for kids and my attempts at unnatural parental “supervision,” they never seemed to be concerned with terms like heat or x-ray. Doll or toy. Nevertheless, the end result comes down one thing, money in relation to the acceptance of visual prejudice.

The US Government has weighed in on the mortal versus mutant battle when it comes to toys and dolls, and I was very dismayed at the verbiage as well as the outcome. Where is the Doll equality?

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

paul March 02, 2012 at 02:25 PM
When is a Toy Not a Toy and Just a Doll????????

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