Sex doll joke gift causes uproar in Chile

Chile Economy Minister Luis Cespedes poses with other lawmakers with a gift of an inflated sex toy.

Story highlights

  • The minister was photographed laughing while posing with the doll meant to "stimulate the economy"
  • The executive who presented the gift has offered to resign
  • Chile's first female President has condemned the gift

(CNN)A sex doll has landed a government minister and an export executive in hot water in Chile.

The gag gift was given by Roberto Fantuzzi, the head of the Chilean exporters' association, to Chilean Economy Minister Luis Felipe Cespedes at an annual industry dinner on Tuesday night.
    Fantuzzi gave Cespedes the doll, which had a note taped over its mouth that read "to stimulate the economy."
    While gag gifts are common at the yearly event, this year's gift has sparked an enormous backlash.
    Cespedes, who could be seen laughing and smiling upon accepting the naked doll, apologized on Thursday.
    Fantuzzi offered his resignation on Thursday after the incident and pleaded for forgiveness. "I have wife, daughters and granddaughters," he tweeted. "The intention was never to generate violence against women."
    The exporters' association, Asexma, will meet on Friday to discuss his fate, the association said.
    Michelle Bachelet, the country's first female President, also slammed the gift and chastised the two men for their disrespect for women.
    "The fight for women's respect has been an essential principle for my government," she said in a tweet. "What happened in the Asexma dinner cannot be tolerated."
    Meanwhile, Twitter blew up in disappointment with the tone-deaf offering.
    One person tweeted, "The rampant machismo of the Chilean businessmen hurts society, endorses the objectification of women and thus violence." In a survey conducted in 2015, 96% of Chilean women said Chile is a macho country; 80% of men believed so. Almost half the respondents said they had discriminated against a woman in the past.
    Many on social media have also asked for Bachelet to ask Cespedes for his resignation.