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THE TOBACCO EXPERIENCE People either love it, or hate it. There are no grey areas.

Its just black or white, nothing else in between. It may be small, stickthin, and squashy, yet, it changes moods, even changes lives, with just a puff. It gives you satisfaction; it relaxes your mind and body. Have a light? A tobacco. A cigarette. Yes, whatever brand you have there, it is still the same. A paper tube filled with chopped up tobacco leaf with a filter at one end. It is addicting, like heroin and cocaine; it is delicious, like chocolate and beer. Thank the tobacco industry for keeping the fire going (literally and figuratively). But then, even if tobacco cigarettes are nonmoral, completely out of moralitys realm, issues about its makers are alive and kicking, for when it is marketed, advertised, lit, puffed, and inhaled arises. Ethical Issues in Tobacco Industry The tobacco industry provides a classic setting to the study of ethics. Though legal, many elements have been subject to intense public discussion with regard to whether manufacturing, marketing, and selling cigarettes are okay even for a potentially harmful product, and thus, raise ethical questions. Ethicists targeting In are always concerned who are about businesses to actively physical, include vulnerable the tobacco consumers susceptible consumers (by its smoker and/or by others around), a moral problem

economic, or psychological harm in market transactions. marketplace, vulnerable may children, adolescents, and lower income and less educated consumers. Cigarettes are considered to be a harmful adult product because of its potential to cause physical (e.g., cause cancer), economical (e.g., monetary cost of consumption), or psychological harm (e.g., feeling of addiction to me). Tobacco products receive considerable attention from both public policy makers and consumers because of the health, safety, and social problems associated with its consumption.

Issues

that

are

of

specific

concern

to

public

are

long-term

health problems, addiction, and consumption by under-aged consumers. Policy makers are also concerned about the level of annual healthrelated economic costs associated with smoking, which was estimated to be $157 billion in 1999 (Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 2002). Given the number and magnitude of the issues related to its consumption, it is only logical to expect that there will be substantial interest in evaluating the tobacco industrys existence in the market. Critics argue that, despite abundant evidence that smoking is a health hazard responsible for millions of deaths, manufacturers continue to produce and sell the what-is-known-as deadly goods. Puffing Philippines The modern habit of smoking began in America and spread to Europe the 16th Century. consumer Mass in productions world and of cigarettes largest began in the 19 th the Century. In the Philippines, the country is known to be tobaccos 15th biggest the the consumer among Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) according to a 2002 study of the World Health Organization. Also, the 2009 Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) has estimated that more than 17 million adult Filipinos smoke, while a Department Of Health survey showed that Filipino children as young as five years old are already starting to smoke. The Philippine tobacco to industry publicly worked disclaim in the step with its international counterparts links between

smoking and disease. Resulting to a dilemma in whether tobacco smoking is a wrong action and if the tobacco industry bad, or if it is not, proving that the same ethical problem exists. Have a light? Given done? We believe that the best thing to do is to show, not just tell, people that tobacco smoking is a wrong action and the tobacco industry the facts above, indeed, the numbers say it all, the country is indeed under the smoking spell. With that, what must be

is

bad.

Indeed,

tobacco

smoking

is

an

individual

choice,

yet,

we

believe that society has the right to act on its own behalf. Tobacco smoking, we believe, is a wrong action for the act itself defeats what good traditionally has been. In hedonism, good or right is something which should involve pleasure, happiness, and excellence, which leads to harmony and creativity; whereas, something is bad or wrong if it entails pain, unhappiness, and lack of excellence, which leads to disharmony and lack of creativity. Tobacco smoking is a wrong action for even if it involves happinesspleasure from its seemingly relaxing effectsit is just for a short period only, plus, not everything that brings someone pleasure is necessarily good (e.g Sadism, which is the derivation of pleasure as a result of inflicting pain or watching pain inflicted on others). We believe that happiness for the long-term and for the long-range that is, happiness and pleasure not just for the smoker but for everyone around him/heris what is important. We must remember that something that is good must bring about a harmonious integration of as many human beings as possible. Applying Jeremy Bentham and John Stuart Mills Utilitarianism ethical theory, we prove more of how tobacco smoking is a wrong action and how tobacco industry is bad. Utilitarianism states that Everyone should perform that act or follow a moral rule that will bring about the greatest good (or happiness) for everyone concerned. With this, we believe, that once a tobacco cigarette is breathed in, the life of the doer of the action, and everyone around him/her is inevitably, at risk. Why is that have such so? noted First an and foremost, the hazards of tobacco tobacco cancer, smoking and second-hand smoking are not new to our eyes and ears. Researchers smoking and undeniable association such between as lung life-threatening diseases

chronic arthritis, emphysema, and diseases of the arteries and heart. Tobacco smoking also appears to play a part in other forms of cancer and peptic ulcers. Plus, it is also proven to be responsible for ten Filipinos who die every hour and the country loses of P500 billion

annually from healthcare costs and productivity losses according to the Department Of Health. It is also noted that nonsmokers may be affected by environmental smoke; passive smokers are perhaps three times more likely to die of lung cancer than they would be otherwise. Plus, tobacco smoking causes both physical and psychological addiction. If this is the case, then pain, unhappiness, disharmony, and lack of creativity, which are the characteristics of what being bad or wrong are present. Thus, where is the greatest good for the greatest number here, if those above-mentioned are the consequences for puffing a tobacco cigarette? The health hazards resulting from the practice of tobacco smoking have generally been recognized by the public. Filter cigarettes and then low-tar and low-nicotine scientists cigarettes have have gained popular to acceptance. Behavioral devoted much attention

helping people stop smoking. Although many people have successfully quit, many other have difficulty ending the habit. Thus, limiting point, Sale efforts public if to educate in no the public have is concentrated permitted, smoking, on and the presenting negative images, regulating the advertising of cigarettes, the even spaces are of in (An which exact smoking laws increasing the cost of cigarettes by taxation. This is the second there against Comprehensive Tobacco Regulation Act [An Act Regulating the Labeling, and Advertising Smoking 9211 Cigarettes (and other and tobacco in products), Public Sale, Prohibiting Republic Public Act Conveyances the Enclosed Use,

Places, Providing for Violations Thereof and for Other Purposes], also Act Regulating Packaging, Distribution, and Advertisements of Tobacco Products and For Other Purposes), are proof enough that people are concerned in lessening the harm, and that there is harm, resulting from tobaccos. There is no need for a law to say that tobacco smoking is wrong. It is enough to know that a policy is there to protect the populace from hazardous products and promote the right to health and instill health consciousness among them; promotes the general welfare, and safeguards the interests of the workers and other stakeholders in the

tobacco industry. The government also institutes a balanced policy whereby the use, sale, and advertisements of tobacco products shall be regulated in order to promote a healthful environment and protect the citizens ensure from the hazards of tobacco smoke, the interest of tobacco farmers, and at the same time growers, workers and that

stakeholders are not adversely compromised. Yes, morality is not based on law. There are no laws against smoking, but it doesnt mean that smoking is good; nor it also means that it is not bad. For behind these Acts, we believe that a moral Third, claims of tobacco concern is present. Laws are that increasing taxes on nothing without moral concerns. companies tobacco would hurt tobacco farmers and lead to the loss of livelihood, which inevitably is against our stand for the interest of all those concerned. But then, the Comprehensive Tobacco Regulation Act provides that Filipino tobacco farmers shall be assisted and encouraged to cultivate food crops and other agricultural products to prevent their economic dislocation arising from the worldwide decline in tobacco demand brought about by the increasing public consciousness about the hazards of smoking. We believe that the hurt of tobacco farmers loss of livelihood is much smaller than the hurt of them and other people from acquiring tobacco smoking diseases, of risking their healths. We believe that if implemented properly, the education of tobacco farmers will lead to a more harmonious life, rather than merely harvesting and processing (and even using) tobacco leaves. Fourth is that, according to an article, Does Cigarette Smoking Causes Stress, smokers say that cigarettes help relieve feelings of stress. However, the stress levels of adult smokers are slightly higher than those of nonsmokers, adolescent smokers report increasing levels of stress as they develop regular patterns of smoking, and smoking cessation leads to reduced stress. Far from acting as an aid for mood control, nicotine dependency seems to exacerbate stress. This is confirmed in the daily mood patterns described by smokers, with normal moods during smoking and worsening moods between cigarettes. Thus, the apparent relaxant effect of smoking only reflects the reversal of the tension and irritability that develop during nicotine

depletion. Dependent smokers need nicotine to remain feeling normal. This just means that, once again, the pleasure and happiness brought by tobacco smoking is short-term, for afterwards, the good that is within the cigarette is replaced by the bad. Last but not the least, It cited a 2006 study by the WHO, Department of Health (DOH), University of the Philippines-Manila and the Philippine College of Medical Researchers Foundation showing that the governments economic costs, including expenses for health care and costs of productivity losses, reached P461 billion. Instead of allocating that sum for educational and other health concerns, which will benefit a greater number of people, the billions of pesos is spent in terms of health and economic costs from smoking. Put out the Fire The above-mentioned pieces of evidence show that tobacco smoking is indeed a wrong action. Utilitarianism shows us that the greatest good must not be just about ones self-interest, but it must be the interests of everyone concerned. Consequences of ones action are important in determining whether an act is good or bad. We believe that an act is useless if it doesnt bring out pleasure, happiness, harmony, excellence, and creativity of people, not just a person. An act is useless if it has the tendency of risking lives. Speaking of people, of lives, now we see that health is the major factor why we consider smoking as a wrong action. Health affects our way of living. Health is the general condition of a person's mind, body and spirit, usually meaning to be free from illness, injury or pain. Being healthy gives us happiness, lets us experience pleasure and excellence, which leads to harmony and creativity, who would want to experience its opposites then? Tobacco smoking doesnt just affect the smoker, but even those who doesnt smoke. We must put out the fire before it puts us out.

PHI 203Logic and Ethics BC6A THE TOBACCO EXPERIENCE Khatrina Bonagua Marck Louise Capanang Frecilo Eguillon Princess May Gabis Anjelica Punongbayan Mitch Reyes Ciara Grace Santos Christian Emmanuel Tadle

Prof. Philip James Meoza March 7, 2012