Madeline Link paints a picture in light of the development of an anti-rape nail polish.
An all-male student team at the North Carolina State University have invented Undercover Colors, an anti-rape nail polish technology that will allow women to discreetly check if their drink has been spiked. They claim that the nail polish will change colour if it comes into contact with date-rape drugs.
The group was granted $11 250 by the North Carolina State’s Entrepreneurship Initiative to complete the project.
This isn’t the first time a concept that makes women responsible for their own protection has been invented.
If history can give any insight into the future, this example of the perpetuation of rape culture will be as unsuccessful as the last.
Women have a multitude of anti-rape protection tools at their fingertips, from chastity belts of the 15th century, anti-rape underwear and “Rapex” – a female condom that inserts tiny hooks into an attacker’s penis.
With all of these options available to women, how do we explain a society where 57 per cent of Australian women have experienced one incident of physical or sexual assault in their lifetime?
Women don’t need protection, men need education.
Anti-rape nail polish will not eradicate rape.
There needs to be comprehensive sex education classes for male children to learn that they are not entitled to women’s bodies.
Society educates women from a young age to understand that they are not safe to walk alone at night, that the length of their skirt can act as “NO VACANCY” sign to potential attackers, that they are responsible for their own rape.
Anti-rape nail polish serves as nothing more than a fast-drying cover-up for a society that perpetuates rape culture.
What about the women who can’t afford anti-rape nail polish? Will women be offered free nail polish in bars and clubs along with their wrist stamps?
Preventing individual rape does nothing but shift the problem to the next girl.
The question on society’s lips needs to be, ‘How can we change this?’ not, ‘What did you expect?’
Image: J. Ronald Lee