The BabyDeck is a changing station built into a stroller seat. It folds out like a La-Z-Boy footrest [actually, it folds out like the footrest on a Delta Business Elite seat, which is the opposite direction from a La-Z-Boy.] It was invented by a dad in Texas whose wife was grossed out by a changing table in a public restroom. [It's definitely an improvement over their interim solution, which was to get an SUV.]
As the inventors shop their patent around to major stroller manufacturers, they are proceeding with the launch of their own BabyDeck-equipped stroller, the Abiie G-305 BabyDeck. [Abiie is apparently the term for Aprica in the Shenzhen dialect.]
But if you just think the impact of the BabyDeck technology will be limited to the stroller industry, a social observer named Ernest Dempsey would like you to think again. The BabyDeck is nothing short of a gender stereotyping revolution, an earthshattering redefinition of men's and women's parenting roles:
Still, the gap created by centuries of disparity between gender roles lingers in our time. One of the most common manifestations of this gap is the particular duties in parenting a child-the 'who does what' issue. An interesting study reveals that women (or moms) are the ones expected to change the baby's diapers.Well, obviously! It's as inevitable as night following day. It makes as much sense as buying an Escalade in order to change a diaper. Or as using some random blogger's "research" on men's rooms as a datapoint. Or as a Pakistani press release writer-for-hire with a ridiculous pen name making grandiose pronouncements on the state of gender relations from the freakin' Tribal Frontier, where gang-rape and stoning are still considered valid punishments for women.
The study in question was made by Greg Allen, an American filmmaker and writer, who was doing research on the number of public men's room in New York that were facilitated with diaper-changing facility. Allen's findings pointed that most men's rooms lack a diaper-changing table. Most of them also lacked enough space to change a baby's diapers. In contrast, more women's restroom had the diaper-changing facility as well as enough space and furniture to clean a baby. The social implications of these facts are pretty clear: dads are not expected to change a child's diapers, even if they want or need to do so.
BabyDeck Stroller is likely to dramatically change the parenting roles that are prevalent in our modern society. With the restrooms out of the diaper-changing scene, the responsibility of diaper-changing is automatically divided equally between parents of both genders. The appearance of BabyDeck Stroller, therefore, negates traditional gender-based stereotypes.
So yeah, the BabyDeck Stroller should be out sometime in 2008. I heartily endorse this event or product.
BabyDeck Stroller with Changing Table [mybabydeck.com]
Is a Parenting Product Negating Gender Stereotypes? [newsblaze via aj at thingamababy]
Totally related, you'll love the ending: "Just a kilometer" a short story by Ernest Dempsey [milkmag.org]