Yesterday I posted a link about nail polish that alerts the wearer to the presence of date rape drugs in beverages. The article was titled “I Shouldn’t Have to Dip My Nails In a Drink to Reduce My Risk of Rape“. Comments heated up quickly, so I want to readdress this. On the surface, the nail polish sounds like a great idea and a way to keep women safe. Perhaps in a very few cases, it will. Those women matter. I think it is okay to say this is a clever idea and kudos to the men who developed it.
I was drugged and raped in college, during that “red zone” for freshman women. Could that have been prevented by me wearing the right nail polish? Who knows.
Could my rape have been prevented by my rapist being taught to not rape? Yes. Absolutely. Unequivocally.
You know, when I think back to that night I don’t think “I really wish I had been wearing rape alert nail polish.”
I think, “I really wish the boy who raped me and the boy who drugged my drink had been raised with the understanding that men should never rape. Rape is never okay and never excusable.”
Many years later I the mother to a son. He will be raised to not rape.
This issue isn’t about me, it is about THOUSANDS of women who will experience rape this year. Girls, boys, and other men will all suffer the experience of being raped at the hands of men. I share my story only because I want you to reach a level of better understanding. I could be any thousands of other women out there. I am not unique in my experience.
Consider this nail polish the front door mat on the porch. What I’m asking you to do is to have the courage to open the door and walk through, we have A LOT of work to do.
“However well-intentioned, there seems to be an awful lot of resources, time and energy dedicated to telling women how not to get raped, and comparatively little going to preventing men from raping in the first place. This provides women with a false sense of comfort and the illusion that a product or a precaution can actually solve the problem of rape, which it won’t.
Moreover, the more we depend on women to prevent rape, the easier it is to blame them when it happens to them. Here’s a look at the well-documented ways we can actually stop rape. Maybe it’s time we invest a little more time and resources into implementing them before we send gallons of nail polish to colleges across the country.” -Elizabeth Plank
Please finish reading Plank’s article “11 Ways to Solve Rape Better Than Nail Polish“. It is excellent. And it is everything we should be talking about when we talk about ending rape.
Thank you in advance for being respectful with your comments.
Melissa Atkins Wardy owns and operates Pigtail Pals & Ballcap Buddies, a small business in Wisconsin, where our shirts are printed and shipped with love.
If you would like to order empowering apparel and gifts for girls and boys, please visit www.pigtailpals.com.
Find Melissa Atkins Wardy’s book “Redefining Girly: How Parents Can Fight the Stereotyping and Sexualizing of Girlhood, Birth to Tween” on Amazon.