I mean, yes, they are actually unable to walk - the definition of lame. But they're also distasteful little puffs of fabric that collect dust and take up more space than they're worth.
Did I just define myself as a terrible person? Does not like stuffed animals = evil; cold-hearted.
Okay look, I don't hate all stuffed animals, just collections of them.
When I had my son, lots of people gifted him with stuffed creatures - which was fine at first. We kept them on a shelf and stared at them on occasion. He never played with them; I guess he's just not a stuffed-animal sort of kid. (Good boy that he is.) But then he continued to amass them over the years.
People gift them and try to pass them down - by the garbage sack full. No, we really do not want your collection of seven dozen stuffed animals from your childrens' childhoods. Whatever would I do with them?
Get one of these? An ugly avalanche of stuffed animal suffocation straight out of the 80's?
Or these? A strange perpendicular zoo/jail?
So, I was all smug and proud of my plushie-hatin for the first couple of years of my son's life. Well, in a mostly polite, quiet kind of way. (Expect to my mom; she got the uncensored version of my, NO, DO NOT give my child another stuffed anything.) And this worked out pretty well for us; we kept our plushie numbers down.
Someone once gave my son, at 4-years old, a teddy bear to which he later said to me, "But Mom, how do I play with it?" ...So, he and I were pretty much on the same page.
Then.... I birthed this little girl. This little child, who as it turns out, cradles, feeds, pets, hugs, cleans, and generally loves on every small living and pretend-living creature that crosses her path. She loves animals. She loves babies. And yes, she is a first-rate plushie-lover.
Dolls and stuffed animals litter - yes litter - her small, shared bedroom. And when she goes to sleep at night, an arsenal of textiled-stuffing blankets her body; she will have it no other way. Dog, Kitty, and Bunny (pink and brown bunny, not the white one, or the pink one, or the brown with white spots one) are her Top 3. They are must in the crib. Whatever else has caught her fancy for the day will join the Top 3 in the cushy zone of privilege that is crux of her little arms.
When they're not lining her sleeping body, she pushes them around in a toy shopping cart or a stroller, stuffs them in her clothes, carries them on walks, sets them on chairs around the table or next to her in the high chair...
It's like they're taunting me. Those glass-eyed little critters sitting up tall everywhere I look, with their complacent little smiles. They won. They fill my home. They are a collective whole that could be termed a collection.
Like absolutely everything else in parenting, my plushie hatin has been ground down into a fat slice of humble pie. Anything I was successful with in the earliest years of parenting my first, my second child came along and beat me over the head with my self-congratulatory confidence. So different; they are so different.
Each child is a wholly unique creature. We should remind ourselves of this before we judge other parents based upon our own experiences.
So, you win, you lame little pieces of fluff; you win.