Wednesday, August 08, 2012

Lady-Blurring Glasses Are Like Beer Goggles For Orthodox Jews 

Let's say you're having a problem. Say you're a dude, and your vision is just too good. It's so good that you can see attractive women, and those women turn you on. How will you solve your problem? Learn not to stare at people? Teach yourself that women's bodies are not pieces of meat? Naaaah. Just buy a pair of blurry glasses!

Stores in Mea Sharim, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Jerusalem, are carrying special blurred glasses designed to help men avoid looking at women. These special glasses blur out anything that is more than ten feet away, which means that men can do things like cross the street safely, read the newspaper, and stare lasciviously at women who have the misfortune of only being nine and a half feet away.

This story may seem like a joke, but Mea Sharim is an area notorious for its super-conservative beliefs and policing of women and their bodies. Some buses that go through the neighborhood are separated by gender, with women assigned to the back Rosa Parks-style. Though they can't pass their own neighborhood-specific laws or ordinances, last year some residents of Mea Sharim posted billboards asking women not to walk through their streets on the way back from parties. Men in the community also have a reputation for throwing stones at people who don't meet their levels of Jewish purity, including people who drive on the Sabbath and women or girls who do not dress "modestly" enough.

If men who already wear prescription lenses feel left out, no worries: you can also get special stickers to put on your glasses. Think of the possibilities these glasses could have for the non-Orthodox community: they'd save tons of time for TV censors and PhotoShoppers. If only there were some glasses that would help you see how to get over yourself.


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