Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Anti-Rape Female Condom;
Is it realistic?

Sometimes technology assists with capital-labour substitution. Here is a good example from the realm of crime prevention and detection [h/t to SC and MA]:

A South African inventor unveiled a new anti-rape female condom on Wednesday that hooks onto an attacker's penis and aims to cut one of the highest rates of sexual assault in the world.

"Nothing has ever been done to help a woman so that she does not get raped and I thought it was high time," Sonette Ehlers, 57, said of the "rapex," a device worn like a tampon that has sparked controversy in a country used to daily reports of violent crime.

...Ehlers said the "rapex" hooks onto the rapist's skin, allowing the victim time to escape and helping to identify perpetrators.

"He will obviously be too pre-occupied at this stage," she told reporters in Kleinmond, a small holiday village about 100km (60 miles) east of Cape Town. "I promise you he is going to be too sore. He will go straight to hospital."

The device, made of latex and held firm by shafts of sharp barbs, can only be removed from the man by surgery, which will alert hospital staff, and ultimately, the police, she said.
While the product has been tested for comfort by females, and has been tested on plastic penises, no live trials on males have been started. [The researchers are seeking volunteers from departments of socionomology.]

My understanding is that this is a product that would be inserted by a woman prior to any threat of an attack, for surely once a rape is begun, the perpetrator will not likely wait to allow the victim time to insert it. As a result, I wonder how many women would wear one of these units and for how long.

I'm not a woman, and I don't live in a high rape area, so I probably am not qualified to forecast the actual use and effectiveness of the product, but I cannot imagine wearing one of these very often. If the targeted women feel that way, this product may not be as effective as its developers hope it will be. But if it works, great.

It might be awkward if a woman got so used to wearing the device that she forgot about it.
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