A South African doctor has developed a condom for women to wear as protection in case they’re raped. The delightfully-named Rape-aXe condom is fitted with special ‘teeth’ designed to grip on to an assailants penis. Once attached, only a doctor can remove it.
Now I’m all for rapists being punished for their crime, but some things concern me about this condom.
Firstly, will a woman be expected to wear the Rape-aXe at all times on the off chance that she might be raped? Imagine the psychological effect this could have, half expecting that she could be assaulted at any time. Alternatively, it could give her a false sense of security.
Secondly, the ‘successful’ application of the condom could lead to further violence being inflicted upon the woman once it is attached to her assailant – he will, perhaps, be in pain and possibly panicked and more than a little angry. I know – stiff shit, he deserves it. I’m just saying that a rapist will not just shrug his shoulders, apologise and toddle off to the nearest doctor; any person who commits a rape is clearly not in his right mind to start with.
Thirdly, if a woman is raped and she is not wearing the Rape-aXe, whether she forgot or deliberately chose not to wear it, would she then be viewed as somehow ‘inviting’ the attack by not taking propert precautions to protect herself? Think of the accusations levelled against many victims that they were ‘asking for it’ simply by dressing a certain way. It’s completely unjustified but it happens.
Apparently the doctor asked convicted rapists whether, if something like the Rape-aXe condom had existed at the time they’d committed their crime, they would’ve reconsidered their actions. Only some of them said they would. While it’s a worry that apparently the rest don’t seem to have been too bothered about having a toothy condom attached to their dicks, what I find more concerning is that the question implies the reason why guys (I hesitate to call these people ‘men’) should not rape is for fear that they might themselves get hurt.
This brings me to my last concern. Devices like the Rape-aXe condom do not address the heart of the matter – the sooner males guys learn to keep their cocks to themselves (unless invited otherwise) and get it into their heads that rape is not on, under any circumstances, the better off we’ll all be. I applaud the doctor’s ingenuity and desire to make a difference, I’m just not convinced that she’s on the right track.