A new Lego character attracts controversy

To read on Mirror website:

Note: In the UK, the term of ‘Learning disability’ is used instead of ‘Intellectual disability’.

Outrage as Lego calls new character ‘window licker’ and describes it as ‘experiment gone wrong’

Louise Sassoon

Lego character

Turg: The Lego character described as a « window licker »

Lego has come under fire after they advertised a new toy character as a “window licker” on their webiste.

The new Lego figurine, named Turg – was part of the toy company’s Mixels range and released at the beginning of this month.

But it is described with an insulting term for the learning disabled on the famous brand’s official website.

Children around the world were able to see the online blurb alongside a picture of the creature at the click of a button.

The official description alongside of a picture of the yellow one-eyed character read: “Turg looks like an experiment that’s gone very, very wrong!

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« Part frog, part chicken, part back-of-the-bus window-licker, this Mixel has the longest tongue of them all.”

The term window licker was widely used as a distasteful jibe but disability charities have campaigned to stamp out the term and other similar offensive language.

It is listed in the urban dictionary as a euphemism for a person of mentally challenged status alongside a warning which reads: “It is offensive and wrong to name a person people who is mentally challenged a ‘window licker’ or a ‘retard’.”

In 2003, the term was voted third most offensive that could be used relating to disability in a poll run for the BBC’s Ouch! disability talk show.

Leading charity SCOPE which campaigns for disabled people to have the same opportunities as the able bodied in the UK said it was shocked by its use.

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Daniel Mazliah, head of campaigns and communications at the disability charity said: “It’s pretty shocking that Lego has used this outdated and offensive word to market one of its toys.

“There is no doubt that many customers with disabled children will be appalled.

“Lego is a huge brand, loved by millions of young people who might think that this word is acceptable to use.

« We would ask Lego to remove this word from all marketing.”

One parent told the Mirror she was appalled to read the term when browsing the Lego website with her child.

The mum said: “I went online with my fiver-year-old to look at the new characters and couldn’t believe what it said.” (…)

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