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Anti-Rape clothing causing controversy

9:21 PM, Nov 7, 2013   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- This is a story that's been getting a lot of people talking. 

Two people from New York are raising money on crowd-funding website, Indiegogo, to make a proto-type of something called Anti-Rape Wear. It's underwear and shorts for women that can't be cut, ripped, or pulled down. They are locked, and only the wearer knows the combination. The creators wouldn't talk to WUSA9 on camera, and they don't give their last names on their fundraising site, preferring for the focus to be on the product. Their spokesperson, however, would answer emailed questions.

Apparently, co-creator Ruth narrowly escaped sex attacks twice.

She and co-creator Yuval believe a delay like the one this clothing can provide could frustrate an attacker and help prevent a rape. 

We showed the video on the Indiegogo site to Santa Molina-Marshall who heads up counseling and advocacy at the DC Rape Crisis Center. Her first reaction, "I can see this product being a major disaster where as opposed to getting raped, now you're going to get killed. Now you're going to get stabbed or shot or dragged or tortured. " 

The narrator on the Anti Rape Wear video explains, "We want to provide a product that will make women and girls feel safer when out on a first date, or a night of clubbing, taking an evening run, traveling in another country or in other potentially risky situations." But, Molina- Marshall says this could give a person a false sense of safety.  "Going back, and putting responsibility on the women, first of all to make this purchase, secondly to feel like I just didn't wear my whatever-these-things-are-called and, had I put them on, I mean the degree of guilt and sense of shame and responsibility just increases. "

Online, people are commenting and suggesting the creators want to profit  off of women's fears. They counter, "We are committed to avoiding "fear-mongering" in the promotion of our product line, but one could just as well claim that all products marketed for safety or security exploit fears."

Molina-Marshall points out that most rapes are perpetrated by someone the survivor knows, and rape is not all about penetration,  "It's not going to be as easy for somebody to get into your pants, that's supposed to make you safe? It's ok for someone to drag you into a vehicle, it's ok for someone to throw you up against a wall, it's ok for someone to call you a slut, it's ok for someone to not take your no as a no because they just can't get into your pants?"

As of this writing, the creators have raised $40,000 towards their $50,000 goal. 

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