Friday, January 09, 2009

Kerusso: baptizing secular toys into the Christian economy

I have written several times about industry of making secular toys "Christian". But my recent posts have lead to me one company with which I am unimpressed: Kerusso.

They are behind the Jesus Monster Truck, the Praise Ponies and the Gods Girlz Bratz/Barbie knockoffs. Apparently, at one time, they even had "Faith Beads". See more here.

I believe that most of people who buy these toys are probably good people who truly want to live faithfully. But I don't feel the same way about the people behind the toys. Instead, after researching some of the ridiculous Christian knockoffs they have tried to sell, I believe they are just wanting to make a profit.

I have seriously considered whether, they too, are just trying to be counter-cultural in an effort to follow Christ. And possibly, they are - although very misguided. But from the pattern of toys and gimmick-y items they sell, I'm pretty sure they are people who are exploiting the name "Christian" for their own gain.

For example, in light of cross-marketing (marketing a brand between two mediums, such as a movie and a Happy Meal toy) and marketing to children, Kerusso's "Gods Girlz" dolls are advertised to be wearing a "Kerusso shirt". Kerusso is primarily a T-shirt Graphic company. So, I find their cross-marketing and marketing their brand to children to be tacky and nothing less than secular.

Here's my question to the Kerusso company:
How about instead of baptizing secular toys into the Christian economy, let's consider simple, good quality toys for children that encourage sharing, love for others, an appreciation for God's earth and open-ended play?

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