Dr. Sonnet Ehlers invents female rape condom. After 40 years of practicing medicine in South Africa and treating women who lived in a country with the highest incidence of rape in the world, Dr. Ehlers devised a female rape called "Rape-aXe" condom. The device is inserted in a style similar to that of a tampon but works much like a latex condom with jagged rows of teeth like hooks on the inside which attack and attach a man's penis during penetration. The device then lodges on the penis and can only be removed by a trained medical provider. Ehlers states that once the device attaches to a man's member, "it hurts, he cannot pee, and walk when it's on. If he tries to remove it, it will clasp even tighter...however it doesn't break the skin and there's no danger of fluid exposure." Dr. Ehlers hopes authorities will be on stand by to arrest men trapped within the device.
Dr. Ehlers had to sell her home and her car to finance the project. Clinical trials began with the distribution of 30,000 Rape-aXe devices during the World Cup competition. After the trial period ends, the device can be purchased for a little more than $2 dollars each.
Dr. Ehlers assures the device is safe as it was constructed by consulting "engineers, gynecologists, and psychologists."
Critics do not believe the device will do much to protect human rights in South Africa and render the device medieval or a form of "enslavement." Ehlers responds to critics by mentioning that some South African women use far more dangerous means of protecting themselves by inserting razor blades wrapped in sponges into their bodies. Ehlers rather agrees with the medieval rendering by stating "yes, my device may be medieval, but it's for a medieval deed that has been around for devades. I believe something's got to be done...and this will make some men rethink before they assault a woman." Many rapists never receive punishment and victims never receive justice because proving the attack is often difficult and costly.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention fellow Victoria Kajja, from Uganda states that "the fears surrounding the victim, the act of wearing the condom in anticipation of being assaulted all represent enslavement that no woman should be subjected to" because the device would simply "remind women of their vulnerability."