In response to a rising trend of people trying to get around sex segregation laws in Saudi Arabia, police will now strictly enforce a ban on the sale of pet cats and dogs in the city of Riyadh. If authorities find you walking one of these pets in public (you can walk a cat?), they will take away the furry creature for good. First they outlawed Valentine's Day, and now cats and dogs?!
The Commission For the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice wants men to stop using these pets as a way to pick up, or even talk to, women in public places. The rule against public mingling among non-family members of the opposite sex is serious business; a few months ago, Saudi religious police jailed an American living in the country after she sat with her male colleagues in a Starbucks.
If the fight against flirting requires officials to resort to extreme laws like a ban on pets, does it signal that sex segregation might not be so realistic?