Venereal disease during World War II was an enemy the US military used propaganda to battle. Posters (and videos) warned of things like the enemy in your pants, potential disease-spreading women, and the lurking presence of sexually transmitted diseases around every corner – all meant to slap servicemen in the face with the message "PROTECT YOURSELF!" And they delivered this message with some fun vintage STD slang to boot.
Vintage STD posters paid particular attention to syphilis and gonorrhea, two diseases that were problematic during both World War I and World War II. During World War I, VD cost the Allies as many as 18,000 troops per day. With treatment for gonorrhea lasting 30 days and syphilis taking six months, this severely affected the number of servicemen on hand. As a result, 1930s and 1940s propaganda urged prevention as well as treatment, playing on men's senses of duty, masculinity, patriotism, and intelligence in the process.
Women were villainized, and men were shamed, but, overall, disease rates decreased exponentially during World War II. So, give the Allies another victory along with that shot of penicillin.
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