Slanties Eyewear?

by Latoya Peterson

Am I the only one thinking this couldn’t possibly end well?

Here is the product’s description:

slanties are based on ancient Inuit eyewear. Each pair of slanties is handcrafted. Our light, durable finish shows off the natural wood grain. slanties are engineered to be sturdy and reliable, and each pair is reinforced with a layer of fiberglass. If cared for correctly, your slanties will last for 800 years. Wear slanties on the beach as functional sunglasses. Wear Slanties to the club. Wear slanties to visit your grandparents, they’ll love them too. We hope that each pair will bring you great happiness.

In addition to the stunningly racist name, those fuckers will set you back $75. If you look on the sites photo gallery, you get to see people wearing these in public.

Interestingly enough, when I did a search for Inuit eyewear to see what they were actually called, I came across this tidbit:

In the Arctic, the sun shines low on the horizon twenty-four hours a day for nearly 190 days during the summer. Snow blindness occurs when the sunlight reflecting off the surface of the snow combines with the light angled directly into the eyes to burn the retina. For the Inuit, snow blindness hindered hunting, travel, and trade. The painful condition could last for days. Ouch! Into the original classic sport.

According to the Canada’s National History Society, the Inuit constructed eyewear from caribou antlers, bone, leather or wood. Carved to fit the natural curve of the face, with a divot for the bridge of the nose and two slits for the eyes, it was held in place with sinew, the first snow goggles date back to the Thule Inuit, two thousand years ago. The slits allowed them to see, but blocked enough light to prevent snow blindness. As technology advanced, this Inuit design gradually evolved into the sunglasses and protective eyewear of today.

So if this is the legacy, why do we need a racist name slapped on the reinterpretation?

(Hat tip to Jessica for this one.)

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Racialicious is a blog about the intersection of race and pop culture. Check out our daily updates on the latest celebrity gaffes, our no-holds-barred critique of questionable media representations, and of course, the inevitable Keanu Reeves John Cho newsflashes.

Latoya Peterson (DC) is the Owner and Editor (not the Founder!) of Racialicious, Arturo García (San Diego) is the Managing Editor, Andrea Plaid (NYC) is the Associate Editor. You can email us at team@racialicious.com.

The founders of Racialicious are Carmen Sognonvi and Jen Chau. They are no longer with the blog. Carmen now runs Urban Martial Arts with her husband and blogs about local business. Jen can still be found at Swirl or on her personal blog. Please do not send them emails here, they are no longer affiliated with this blog.

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