Know for Sure (Research Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for USPHS, 1941)

Know for Sure (Research Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for USPHS, 1941)


[Music] [Man 1:] Now you’re gonna make a… [Men crowded around shop window, talking, smiling, oohing and aahing] [Man 1:] Down, up, down. [Man 2:] Tony, Tony, what’re ya doing? [Tony:] Thatsa my son, I gotta write my boy here. [Man 2:] That’s not right, you spell it with an O. S-O-N [Tony:] Ohhh [Man 2:] That’s right. [Tony:] Whaddya think? [Man 3:] That’s all right, O. [Men cheer] [Siren] [Men shout and crowd around ambulance as doctor emerges.] [Tony:] Please everybody, out of the way, come on. I got everything all ready, Doc Davis, back here, please. That’s Maria, my wife, she’s in this room and she got her sister with her, please doctor, hurry up. I stay right here, wait for the good news, huh? [Door shuts] [Tony:] Ah ha, whatsa matter, business is over, finished, please, everybody outside, Tomorrow everybody come and drink the free wine for my new baby. Buona Sera. Good night and thank you everybody. Good night. [Accordion music] [Tony:] Whatsa matter doc, don’t you gotta tell me he’s a boy? He’s a boy, no? [Dr. Davis:] Yes Tony, it’s a boy…[Tony:] Maria, Maria, she’s okay? [Dr. Davis:] She’s all right. [Tony:] Well the, the bambino’s all right, Maria’s all right, but…your face isn’t all right. Whatsa matter? [Dr. Davis:] Tony, your son was born dead. [Accordion clanks to the floor] [Tony:] My first bambino is dead…what happened? [Dr. Davis:] Well, I’ve got a pretty good idea, Tony. But I’ll have to ask you a few questions first. [Tony:] Questions, what questions? [Dr. Davis:] Well not now Tony, I better wait ’til your wife… [Tony:] No please, now. You’re driving me crazy, what’s happening? [Dr. Davis:] All right. Did anyone ever tell you Tony, that you’ve got syphilis? [Tony:] Syphilis? What are you talking about? I never got any… [Dr. Davis:] Think. I want you to think back carefully. Do you remember ever having a sore on your penis that didn’t heal very fast? [Tony:] No no, I never. Well…yes about two years ago. Before I was married I got a little sore, but I buy so much salve, I put it on so it will cure. [Dr. Davis:] That might make the sore go away, but no medicine you could buy ever cured syphilis. [Tony:] I’ve got syphilis. [Dr. Davis:] I’m almost sure syphilis killed your baby, Tony. You see, a syphilitic sore will go away without any treatment in time, but the germs stay in your body. [Tony:] You mean I… [Dr. Davis:] Yes Tony, I’m afraid that you gave Maria syphilis and she gave it to the baby. [Tony grabs a knife and jams it into the countertop.] [Dr. Davis:] Tony! [Tony:] I killed my bambino, I break my wife’s heart, I don’t want to live no more. [Dr. Davis:] Tony, you gotta get hold of yourself. [Tony:] What’s the good in living no more, I can’t have a bambino! [Dr. Davis:] You’re wrong, Tony. With proper medical treatment, you can both be cured, then you can have all the bambinos you want. [Tony:] You…you mean me and my Maria, we go to the hospital. We can have another bambino and he’s gonna live? [Dr. Davis:] Sure you can. [Tony cries.] [Dr. Davis:] If you have the proper medical treatment. I want you to promise me you’re gonna come to the hospital. [Tony:] Please doctor. Excuse the tears, my heart it feels so full up it’s gotta run over a little bit, but…is it true that we can have another son who’s gonna be all right? [Dr. Davis:] Believe me Tony, it is. [Tony:] All right. We take any kind of a treatment, doctor. [Dr. Davis:] Atta boy. Now I’ve got to go in the other room to see your wife. [Tony:] I gonna go with you. [Dr. Davis:] No Tony, but I’ll let you know when you can come in. [Tony:] Please doc, don’t be too long huh? [Dr. Davis:] Okay, Tony. [Dr. Davis walks away and shuts the shop door.] [Tony drops the knife and picks up a towel to wipe his face.] [Dr. Perkins:] Well, goodbye Tony. Now remember you and your wife must come here every week. You mustn’t miss a single treatment. [Tony:] Don’t you worry, doctor, me and my Maria we come here every week, you betcha my life. [Maria:] Thank you, Mr. Doctor, for coming to see me so many times. My Tony and me are very glad we have such good friend who tell us what to do. [Dr. Martin:] Oh that’s all right Mrs. Madroni. Goodbye. [Maria:] Goodbye. [Dr. Martin:] Goodbye, Tony. [Tony:] Goodbye doctor, and thank you too much. [Dr. Martin:] Be sure you come every week. [Dr. Perkins:] Come in, young man. [Dr. Martin:] Oh Dr. Perkins? [Dr. Perkins:] Yes? [Dr. Martin:] I want to thank you for taking an interest in Tony Madroni and his wife. [Dr. Perkins:] Oh don’t thank me, the more patients the better I like it, Dr. uhhh… [Dr. Martin:] Martin. I was the intern on the Madroni case. [Dr. Perkins:] Oh yes Dr. Martin, I’m very glad to meet you. Want to come in? Have a chair. [Dr. Martin:] Thank you. [Dr. Perkins:] I won’t be long. [Dr. Perkins:] Well, young man, what seems to be your trouble? That’s all right, this is Dr. Martin. [Patient:] Well sir, some time ago I picked up a girl in a dance hall. Well, about three weeks later I noticed a little sore here on my mouth. Didn’t pay much attention to it, I thought it was just a cold sore, but the darn thing hung on so long I got kind of worried about it. I happened to pick up one of these Public Health Service folders and got to reading about syphilis and I got scared. [Folder titled Syphilis, its cause, its spread, its cure] [Dr. Perkins:] Hmmm. Did the folder explain everything all right? [Patient:] Yes sir, said in there even though a sore might heal up just like mind did, if you’ve got syphilis, the germs might still be in your body. I found out all the things that could happen to you if you didn’t get to it right away. I figured I better come down here and find out about it. [Dr. Perkins:] Good boy. Miss Jones! I want to take a blood test on this man. [Nurse Jones:] Yes, doctor. [Dr. Perkins:] All right, take off your coat and roll up your sleeve, please. Now, this blood test will show whether you had a cold sore or whether you’ve got syphilis. If this makes you nervous, you can turn your head. Make a tight fist, please. [Patient:] Is it gonna hurt much, doc? [Dr. Perkins:] No no, just a little pinprick, and as soon as we finish this you can go on to the other room and Dr. Howard will give you a complete physical examination. [Dr. Martin:] He’s pretty lucky to have picked up this folder. [Dr. Perkins:] Sit down, make yourself comfortable. [Dr. Martin:] Thank you. [Dr. Perkins:] Yes, he was lucky to have picked up that folder. [Dr. Perkins:] But there are hundreds of thousands of men and women in this country suffering from syphilis who won’t pick up a folder. It’s a pretty sad state of affairs when we have to depend on luck, to whip this syphilis problem. If they could see the truth behind newspaper articles reporting nervous breakdowns, suicides, and deaths from heart failure, they’d find a shocking percentage could be chalked up to late syphilis. Now I was called as a consultant in this case. [Dr. Perkins:] Stanton didn’t have a nervous breakdown. He had paresis, probably contracted syphilis 15 or 20 years ago. The outward symptoms disappeared and he thought he was cured. And syphilis began to soften his brain and his business judgment went bad, but by the time he went to pieces it was too late to save either the public’s money or Stanton. [Dr. Martin:] And yet he could have been cured if he’d received medical care in time. [Dr. Perkins:] Surely, if Stanton had had a blood test and proper treatment years ago, we could have prevented that tragedy. [Dr. Perkins:] Now here’s another problem we run into. Here’s a man who began his treatments 10 years ago and took them for a few weeks. Until the sore cleared up and he thought he was cured. We couldn’t get him back again for the rest of the treatments. It took syphilis ten years to get him, but two months ago he had a heart attack while he was driving his car. He crashed into a schoolyard and killed three children. Syphilis killed them all. [Dr. Martin:] Yes, but those men didn’t know as much about syphilis as young fellas do today. The average young fella today knows enough to use a rubber to protect himself. [Dr. Perkins:] Well Morton I’d like to agree with you, but I can’t. You’d be surprised how many young fellas don’t know enough to use a rubber. Now here’s a typical case. Jerry Anderson. Jerry Anderson, college athlete, good student, intelligent, son of respectable family. Jerry’s story began the afternoon of the last football game of the season. He and his teammates had won the game and decided to go out for a little celebration that evening. [Jerry:] Remember me? [Housekeeper:] Sure do. [Housekeeper:] More the merrier. Ladies in the parlor! [Jerry:] Come on in fellas, good evening…hurry up. [Housekeeper:] Miss Peggy is waiting for you. [Jerry:] Thanks. [Door closes] [Dr. Perkins:] So, Jerry had his celebration and only three weeks later, he was sitting just where you are. [Dr. Perkins:] What’s your name? [Jerry:] Jerry Anderson. [Dr. Perkins:] Jerry Anderson, hmm. How did you happen to come into the clinic? [Jerry] Well, I couldn’t afford to go to a private doctor, I didn’t know what to do. Called the County Health Department to see if they couldn’t do something for me. I was told to come and see you. [Dr. Perkins:] Hmm. What’s your trouble, Jerry? [Jerry:] Well I, I’ve got a pretty bad sore down here. [Dr. Perkins:] Mmm-hmm. Why don’t you just stretch out on the table over there, we’ll have a look at you. [Dr. Perkins:] You’re lucky the sore bothered you son, because it won’t take us long to find out what your trouble is. [Dr. Perkins:] How long have you had this, Jerry? [Jerry:] About eight days, doctor. [Dr. Perkins:] It aches pretty bad, doesn’t it? [Jerry:] It sure does. [Dr. Perkins:] Why didn’t you use a rubber? [Jerry:] I’d gone to this girl before. I’d heard the girls that work in the house were inspected every week. She looked clean. [Dr. Perkins:] You young fellows who think prostitutes are safe because they look clean, make an awful mistake. Come over here. I want you to see this little corkscrew devil, that’s causing all your trouble. Look. [Dr. Perkins:] This darkfield test shows up the spirochetes. Can you see them wriggling back and forth across the slide? [Jerry:] Yes. What did you call them? [Dr. Perkins:] Spirochetes. Those are the germs that caused your syphilis. You had to learn the hard way that you can’t tell by the looks of a woman whether she has syphilis or not. [Jerry:] Well I guess that finishes me. I’ll have to leave home, quit school, and go someplace where people don’t know who I am. [Dr. Perkins:] Now Jerry, you know you can’t meet any problem by running away from it. You may not realize it, but you’re a very lucky young man because we’re catching this in time to cure you. Miss Jones, prepare a four-tenths neo-injection please. [Jerry:] Yes, but doctor I can’t take a chance on the folks of the kids at school finding out I’ve got syphilis. [Dr. Perkins:] Now don’t worry about having syphilis. Luckily after the first few injections the sore will disappear and you won’t be able to infect anybody. You can go about your classwork, play basketball, tennis, or indulge in any other sport. Sit down here please and roll up your sleeve. And nobody need ever know that you have syphilis. But you’ll have to report every week and not miss a single treatment for at least one year. [Jerry:] That’s sure a relief, I feel like living again. [Jerry:] Gee doctor, that, that didn’t hurt a bit. I’d always heard that shots for syphilis were painful. [Dr. Perkins:] Not if you go to a doctor who knows his business. [Jerry:] I don’t know how to thank you, doctor. [Dr. Perkins:] Just come into my office and give me the name of the girl who infected you. That’s all the thanks I want. Come along. [Jerry:] Gee doctor I kinda hate to do that. I’m no stool pigeon. [Dr. Perkins:] Sit down here, please. Now Jerry, a lot of men have a false sense of chivalry about giving the name of the woman who infected them. We’re not going to do anything harmful to the girl. And your name won’t be brought into it. We only want to bring her in for examination and treatment. If we can treat and cure you and the woman responsible for your infection, we’re breaking another link in the evil chain of syphilis that stretches out from almost every case of the disease. Now look here. We’ve found that one case of syphilis usually results in three more. Each of the three results in another three. So you can see Jerry, that every time we treat and cure this disease, we’re preventing the spread of syphilis to many hundreds of people. So you’re doing your job by coming to me for treatment and I’ll do mine by curing you. [Dr. Martin:] I’m beginning to see what we’re up against, the same old mistakes over and over again. What are we going to do to put young men wise? [Dr. Perkins:] I can show you one of the answers to that question if you have a little time to spare. [Dr. Martin:] I’m right with you doctor. Oh, the courthouse. What are we doing here? [Dr. Perkins:] Well, the county health officers sometimes hold their meetings here. Other times in schoolhouses, lodge buildings, or wherever we can find the space and get an audience. Today they’re running a new film for a group of young men to show them how to protect themselves from contracting venereal diseases. [Dr. Perkins:] Simple straightforward fights with no punches pulled. [Dr. Martin:] What do they mean by Sucker? [Are you being played for a SUCKER] [Dr. Perkins:] Anybody who believes a druggist or a quack doctor ever cured a case of syphilis. And there are hundreds of thousands of them in this country. Why, disreputable druggists and quack doctors robbed the poor devils of millions every year. Just the other day I heard of a tragic case. [Dr. Paxton:] Well Mr. Spencer, I can see you’re walking much better since that last medicine I gave you, sit down, sit right down. [Mr. Spencer:] No doctor, not much better. My legs seem to be getting worse every day. [Dr. Paxton:] But yours is a very stubborn case, Mr. Spencer, very stubborn indeed. But you must remember that every rocky road in life has a turning. I have just perfected a new remedy for locomotor ataxia. It’s taken years of research. [Mr. Spencer:] But doctor, you’ve been prescribing new medicines for me for a long time. I’ve paid you over $2,000. [Dr. Paxton:] Mr. Spencer, I’d sooner cut off my right arm, up to there, then take another dollar from you, if you’ve lost faith in my ability or my integrity. [Mr. Spencer:] I’m sorry, doctor. I didn’t mean to hurt your feelings. I don’t mind putting out the money, if I, if I could only get better. [Dr. Paxton:] But losing faith in me isn’t going to make you feel any better, is it now? [Mr. Spencer:] Well, maybe since you put so much time on the new medicine, I ought to give it a fair trial. Are you really sure it will help me? [Dr. Paxton] Why, of course I’m sure! This medicine I absolutely guarantee. Paxton’s Panacea, three bottles of this scientific discovery of mine, at five dollars a bottle, will eliminate every last evil germ of syphilis from your body. Now just follow the directions. Each bottle will last you three days. And on the ninth day, all your pains will have vanished and all of your troubles will be over. [Gunshot] [Dr. Martin:] Of course the coroner said suicide. [Dr. Perkins:] Yes, but that quack with his worthless drugs really murdered the old man. Martin, there’s no excuse for that. We’ve got the weapons to wipe out this disease. But to use them, doctors must have the help of everyone who has been exposed to syphilis. [Narrator:] Syphilis kills babies. It strikes back with blindness and insanity. A licensed physician with modern methods can cure syphilis. No quack doctor or medicine you buy an do the job. Don’t be a sucker! Stick to medical treatment and you can be cured. Prostitutes and pickups aren’t safe and cannot be made safe. It doesn’t pay to take a chance. Use a rubber. Watch for the warning signals. Any sore or rash that does not heal quickly, means go to a licensed medical doctor or call your city or county health officer, at once. If you think you’ve been exposed at any time, get a blood test and a physical examination now. Know for sure! [Music]

Only registered users can comment.

  1. The poor doctor pulled on a cigarette for strength. But there is NO strength in a cigarette. Or anything ELSE except death. It's suicidal to smoke in THESE days. The JOY of the LORD is our strength!
    (See Nehemiah 8:10!)

  2. "The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I Am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." John 10:10!
    There is NO sexual pleasure outside of GOD. The enemy steals from GOD'S anointing with pornography, and fornication etc. Follow the devil and be LOST with NO joy FOREVER! But when we come to JESUS, He gives us JOY UNSPEAKABLE and FULL of GLORY! AMEN!
    (See 1 Peter 1:8!) Abundant LIFE! Abundant LOVE! 💓

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *