Head of Christmas shoebox charity thinks boys shouldn’t play with girl toys

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

The head of the Christian charity responsible for the Christmas Shoebox Appeal has lashed out at a retailer, for removing gendered labelling from its children’s toys.

Target became the latest US-wide retailer to announce a change this week, opting to remove the labels girls’ and ‘boys’ from toys that can be enjoyed by either gender.

However, the move has been attacked by US pastor Franklin Graham – the President of international charity Samaritan’s Purse, which runs the annual ‘Operation Christmas Child’ to distribute toys and evangelical literature to children in third world countries. Mr Graham is also listed as a trustee of Samaritan’s Purse UK.

Ranting on Facebook, he wrote: “In order to be gender-neutral, they won’t be separating things like toys and bedding into boys’ and girls’ sections. Oh really? And they won’t be using pink and blue colors to identify sexes.

“I think Target may be forgetting who has made their stores strong. It’s not gender-neutral people out there—it’s working American families, fathers and mothers with boys and girls they love. What’s next?

“Are they going to try to make people believe that pink or blue baby showers are politically incorrect? I have news for them and for everyone else – God created two different genders.”

He added: “Let Target know what you think. Let them know that you are perfectly willing to shop where the genders God created are appreciated… Target is way off-target on this one”

Samaritan’s Purse requires shoeboxes to be sorted into ‘girls’ and ‘boys’ for Operation Christmas Child.

Graham is notorious for his anti-LGBT views, and has previously claimed Canada has “suffered greatly” over equal marriage, claiming: “Canada began federally mandating same-sex marriage in 2005. What’s happened since then?

“One result has been that freedom of speech, press, and religion have suffered greatly.

“If you say or write anything questioning same-sex marriage, you could face discipline, termination of employment, or prosecution by the government!”

He has also previously said that Vladimir Putin is “doing what’s right for Russia” by implementing anti-gay policies.