We’re no strangers to the dangers of sexually transmitted infections and diseases. Turns out, before we had sex-ed classes in school, the media was responsible for propagating awareness about the risks of contracting diseases like gonorrhea and syphilis. And the angle they often chose? Blaming women. These vintage STD posters shed some light on the unique, lighthearted and at times offensive ways they chose to approach the issue. Take a look.
No medicine for regret! They make a valid point. Especially when regret actually has physical consequences. The messages might be dated, but I have a huge appreciation for the unique styles of the illustrations in these posters. The designers probably didn’t know their work would go down in history as iconic art, but it’s easy to see why their messages still translate. I think the most disturbing part,though, is the casual nature with which these posters handle “loose” women. I mean, it takes two to tango, and it’s not like they were villains of the night, out to spread itchy privates to soldiers in port. A lot has changed, but it’s interesting to see where this stuff sort of originated. See the rest of the set at Mental Floss.
Could you imagine seeing posters like this today? What do you think of the notion that women were harbingers of STDs in wartime?