Scared into submission
We all know smoking is bad for us. Schools, communties and the government make it very clear to everyone that injesting cigarettes into your body isn’t a healthy life choice. Cigarette packs are already required to bear a label warning buyers of the health risks they are taking by choosing to light up. However, the F.D.A is taking things a step further. Instead of simply reading about what could happen to you by smoking, you’ll be forced to look at it. Cigarette packs would be required to cover half the box with a graphic image and an equally graphic warning. Humans react much more passionately to visual stimuli and by placing a picture of a corpse on the cigarette pack, F.D.A hopes that smokers will be scared into quitting.
Hobbes believed that it was sovereigns job to protect it’s citizens. The F.D.A defends the radical labels by saying they are doing the American public a service. These labels certainly are graphic but smokers know the risks associated with smoking.Will placing a graphic picture on the labels really make an impact?
The liberty of a subject, lieth therefore only in those things, which regulating their actions, the sovereign hath praetermitted. -Hobbes Leviathan Pt. 2, Ch. 21
Hobbes stated that men “have made an artificial man, which we call a commonwealth; so also have they made artificial chains.” According to Hobbes, man might have the liberty to make his own decisions but when he joins a commonwealth certain freedoms are sacrificed. Hence men are free but also bound in chains.
While it’s a drastic move on the F.D.As part to place these labels on cigarette packs, in a Hobbesian commonwealth they would have the right to do so. The labels would increase the well being of the commonwealth and a disapproving member must bite the bullet, because they sacrificed their freedom to the commonwealth. Besides, with campus going smoke free in July, maybe it’s time to take quitting seriously.
To read more about the F.D.A labels follow this link /www.nytimes.com/2010/11/11/health/policy/11tobacco.html?_r=1