The comparison between 19th century France and modern public health interventions is important because it illustrates the way that despite cultural differences and modern developments, a lot of the root problems with public health strategies and outcomes have remained the same. The impact of stigma and criminalization on the ability of sex workers to negotiate safer sex and personal health can be seen paralleled from the 19th to the 21st century. These images, which portray syphilis at different stages in many different iterations, shows the ways that artists and photographers have understood the infection, and the discourse that surrounds it. Sex workers have been historically scapegoated for STIs by the general public while simultaneously being criminalized for acknowledging their status publicly and openly carrying condoms. Furthermore, the paternalistic attitude towards the health of sex workers can be seen to have adverse public health outcomes both in France in the 19th century and the US today. Acknowledging these similarities along with the ways that practices have changed is important when strategizing for public health strategies that respect the agency and autonomy the sex worker community. Public health agencies should be striving to create policy that subverts the status quo and looks at what sex workers health needs are, rather than mimicking outdated strategies based in stigma against sex workers.