Hypothetical situation

Discussion in 'Topics in Healthcare' started by Apparition, Dec 2, 2005.

?

What do you do?

  1. Take it

    27 vote(s)
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  2. Leave it

    57 vote(s)
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  1. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    You're being offered an extremely well paying, interesting job at an advertising agency that does a lot of tobbaco ads. Do you take the job? I just interviewed for one, before knowing what they advertise, and I doubt I'll get an offer. And I doubt I'd take it because of this. What would you do?
     
  2. gdbaby

    gdbaby Prettier than before
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    I just couldn't. However I can understand how in this economic climate, it may be necessary to compromise. I mean I was doing research on eating disorders while working at Victoria's Secret!
     
  3. CTSballer11

    CTSballer11 Senior Member
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    Probably not. It depends what other possibilities are out there.
     
  4. CTSballer11

    CTSballer11 Senior Member
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    I do not think you can make the assumption that just becuase a girl has a fit body she has an eating disorder. By far women who are in shape, workout eat right etc.
     
  5. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    Still pretty ironic.
     
  6. MoosePilot

    MoosePilot Y Bombardier
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    Tough question and good post. I haven't answered and probably won't answer, because it's such a tough question I don't think I know what I would do until I was in the situation. It's easy to say I wouldn't take the job, because it's ethically problematic, but to be honest, I prioritize family welfare, so if I needed the money, I probably would.
     
  7. gdbaby

    gdbaby Prettier than before
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    That's what I was going for. Trust me after 6 years of anthro research on the topic, I would never make such an assumption. I have a fit body and eat Double Stuff Oreos like they are going out of style. Speaking of eating disroders....
     
  8. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    That would be my dilemma too. The money could really help out my family and at the same time, it makes me sick to help sell a product that kills people.
     
  9. gdbaby

    gdbaby Prettier than before
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    i think I would put my family first as well. I think whatever decision is made, as long as it is done thoughfully and is well reasoned then it is the best decision you could make given your circumstances at the time.
     
  10. MoosePilot

    MoosePilot Y Bombardier
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    So here's a question:

    Is it more ethical if you get hired to do your utmost at the job you were hired to do or to do a crappy job, knowing that it might snag one less consumer to an evil product? :oops:

    Seriously, people all know smoking is bad for them. They choose to do it anyway. Everyone is responsible for themself and only themself. Liquor, fast cars, food... many things can contribute to death. Cigarettes are probably the most clear cut, but the government has done a pretty good job of making sure everyone is informed of the dangers.

    I'd still hate to do it. If there's another job that pays almost as well, I'd take that one instead.
     
  11. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    This one is easy. It is more ethical to do a crappy job when advertising tabacco.
    My loyalty to preventing disease is way stronger than my loyalty to a corporation. I think I would feel more like a hypocrite doing a good job than a bad one.

    It's not pratically feasible, however, because there are a lot of checks and balances on the quality of the campaign.
     
  12. MoosePilot

    MoosePilot Y Bombardier
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    How funny. I thought the other way, that since you've accepted money from them, you should do what you signed up to do to the best of your ability. I definitely see both sides, though.

    Have you made a decision or are you waiting to see if you get an offer?
     
  13. gdbaby

    gdbaby Prettier than before
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    The irony of this is: many of us are doing a really crappy job right now as we type on SDN instead of doing our work!
     
  14. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    Immediately after college, it would be a harder decision between dong a good job or a crappy job but after over a year in the corporate environment, which I realize is not that much, I noticed that loyalty and integrity are scarce in the workplace.

    I just had a first interview, there's probably going to me more than one more.
    So it's unlikely that I'll get it. But I just thought I'd post and see what SDNers would do. To be honest, I'm surprised. I expected to be bombarded with the "How can you even consider this?" but it looks like people are considering both sides, which is great.
     
  15. MoosePilot

    MoosePilot Y Bombardier
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    Ha.

    I'm not at work. Well... sorta, but I'm traveling for work and currently in a hotel room, so the quality of my work is not impacted by my surfing.
     
  16. Pretty POHA

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    See, for me, this is an easy decision. I don't believe that tobacco companies are responsible for disease because I completely believe that we as individuals, especially in the United States, create our own existence. We as individuals are responsible for choosing to smoke or not to. Tobacco companies provide a product just like McDonald's, Dairy Queen, Liquor stores, and drug dealers. It's up to the individual to try it and continue to use/consume it.

    However, simply due to this one statement, I would strongly encourage you to not take the job. It's not that either yours or my viewpoint is right or wrong-- it's that if you feel this strongly about preventing disease and associate the tobacco business with the contribution of disease, you'll end up miserable in spite of the financial compensation.
    The point is: it doesn't matter how much money you're paid, if it goes against what you believe, then you shouldn't put yourself, your self-esteem, your over all well being into a situation that will compromise that! BE TRUE TO YOURSELF!
     
  17. jamesrd

    jamesrd Member
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    For my second interview I would bring a presentation:

    "Welcome to Marlboro Country" emblazoned over a guy in wearing a johnny with a parka over it, hooked up to an IV pump, holding onto the pole with one hand and holding a cigarette up to the hole in his throat with the other.

    Money is all fine and good, but you'd be taking a position that in some way works to keep smokers smoking, and to replace them with new ones when they die. Not only that, but while their clientele may have been unknown to you, it might not be to an adcom member.
     
  18. DropkickMurphy

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    Yes but that product only kills people who already know (or could be reasonably expected to know) the dangers of smoking. It's not like they are selling cyanide laced Gummi bears or something covert.

    I would lose no more sleep over working for an advertising agency helping to sell cigarettes than I would working for an agency that advertised parachutes, because we all know parachutes are dangerous but they are only used by those of us who are willing to accept the associated risks.
     
  19. angietron3000

    angietron3000 *black magic soul power*
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    I used to be art director for a building industry magazine that occasionally ran editorials that I really disagreed with.. like arguments against the clean water act.. I did my best to pull out the most arrogant/ridiculous statements the authors made into big block quotes in hopes that the readers would see how full of $#!+ they were.. :smuggrin:
     
  20. FACS

    FACS jolly good fellow
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    Extremely well paying, my ass. The salary for entry level advertising jobs sucks. :thumbdown: :thumbdown: :thumbdown:
     
  21. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    It's a management position.
     
  22. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    That's awesome!!! :)
     
  23. Hoberto

    Hoberto Squirrel Girl
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    We actually talked about in an ethics seminar a while back.

    The problem with wanting to do something against tobacco companies is that they have their hands in everything. Not taking the job would be one step but if your goal is not to help tobacco firms in any way you'd have to stop buying products such as Kraft foods, Altoids and Jello. The list of products and companies that big tabacco firms have a financial interest in goes on and on.

    So, while taking the job might seem like you are supporting cigarettes and smoking you have to think about all of the other things that ultimately support these firms, too.

    Personally, I agree with the others who said that it is better to focus on the people who choose to smoke. With education and prevention maybe we can convince people to stop smoking and/or not to start.
     
  24. Apparition

    Apparition 1K Member
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    What does everyone think of making cigarettes illegal? Would this cause WWIII?

    I know, like Hoberto said, that tobacco companies have their nicotin-stained paws in everything, so it would be impossible, but woudn't this sort of be a good idea? It would reduce healthcare costs a little too.
     
  25. DropkickMurphy

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    I'm all for making cigarettes illegal. It will never happen, but one can dream. Either do that or just make life exceedingly difficult for those who wish to smoke.
     
  26. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    This is a good point, but I would go further and say that product diversity aside, you will face the same dilemma if you want to work in any sort of service based industry, as you will always have clients, patients, etc. who you do not agree with, and who present ethical dilemmas. Taken a step further, assume you are a physician, and the president of the tobacco lobby comes to your office for a medical procedure -- would you reject him as a patient because of his job? Would you do a bad job (botch the surgery) because you are opposed to his views? As a physician, you will administer care to people you do not agree with all the time -- addicts and gang members will flow through any big city ED, you will have patients who work in distasteful industries, shirk their medical bills, stand for distasteful things, beat their spouses, evade taxes. If you are the type who would draw the line at an advertising firm that does work with tobacco (which is a paying client running a totally legal business), I suspect you will have a really hard time with some of the patients to whom you will be asked to administer care to as a med studnet or resident.
     
  27. WhatUpDoc!

    WhatUpDoc! The Sign Says It All
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    Yeah freakin right, I see so many politicians and big wig figures lighting it up that it ain't evern funny. You can't make people take care of themselves or do what is right for their body. As stated in previous posts, people are well aware of the dangers and risks they impose by smoking. Why stop at cigarettes? Alcohol, trans-fat containing foods, and tanning beds are all detrimental to good health. My point is that legal action would only exacerbate the problem as well as put approx. 25% of the U.S. population behind bars... there's food for thought :eek:
     
  28. Hausdaddy24

    Hausdaddy24 Im that man fromNantucket
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    It is true that an adult is responsible for choosing whether to smoke or not. But what about a 13-year old? Children are very impressionable and even though tobacco companies aren't supposed to advertise to children they see tobacco ads (flipping through one of their parents magazines for example). Everyone has heard how hard it is to quit once your addicted. Addiction, something no one has mentioned yet. This is precisely why smoking cigarettes is not comparable to eating fastfood or drinking alcohol. Along with mental dependency cigarettes cause severe physical addiction, whereas the other products mentioned only cause mental dependency. Sorry but I really think tobacco companies are pure evil. Come on, they manufacture one of the only products that is meant to be put into your body, but not required to have its ingredients listed ANYWHERE.
     
  29. FrkyBgStok

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    while i understand the ethical issue of it all i would take it.

    i work for a shirt printing company and we do many out of state jobs and one of our best customers owns one of the largest white supremecy distribution centers for white power music and clothing. do i agree with everything he says, absolutely not, but he is an extremely nice guy, he orders large quantities at a time, and he pays in full everytime he orders. i may disagree, but he has the right.
     
  30. Shredder

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    take it. its peoples fault if bad things happen to them, not yours. in this context, that is. as long as youre not committing fraud its legit. for any bad results you can shift the blame to your superiors. besides, tobacco and alcohol advertising is some of the juiciest advertising around. it would probably be a great experience.
     
  31. WhatUpDoc!

    WhatUpDoc! The Sign Says It All
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    What baffles me is the fact that tobacco/alcohol even needs to be advertised. It's like when I see commercials advertising gas... WTF!?!? I'm going to fill up whenever I need to fill up at whatever station I happen to be close to when my tank is near E. My animosity towards big, money hungry corporations aside, I do believe that advertisers should be held accountable for putting a product out there even if it is up to the consumer as to whether or not to actually purchase the product. You can't claim ignorance to the fact that you're killing people by saying "well, not my fault, he brought it, I only made the fancy commercial that lured him in." Same issue pisses me off about "gangsta rappers" and the negativity they put out in their music. Every time I hear one respond to the question about why their music is so violent and over the top, you get the same response: "I only make the music, I'm not putting a gun to anyone's head and forcing them to buy my s##t." I call that an ignorant cop-out... people/companies/advertisers need to man up about their detrimental roles in sociey rather than pointing the finger back at the very same people they intend to market to.
     
  32. Law2Doc

    Law2Doc 5K+ Member
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    You'd be surprised how many people drive past the gas station which doesn't advertise to one which does (assuming a negligible price diferential) -- it's not an accident that Exxon does so well compared to its peers. As for your analogy to the music industry, there are a few flaws in your argument, I think. The first is that there is no chain of causation between music and violence -- most people seem to be able to listen to gansta rap without committing violent crimes (the same cannot be said for cigarettes and lung cancer). Second, we have the first amendment of the constitution, which guarantees (and perhaps encourages) the right to express unpopular and detrimental viewpoints, partially as a safety valve -- because if issues are out in the open rather than hidden agendas, they tend to be less dangerous and revolutionary (this is the supreme courts view from some time ago). But most importantly, cigarettes are not illegal, violent crimes are. While some have moral issues with cigarettes, these companies have the blessing of the US government, are huge employers and taxpayers, fund lots of medical research, and have diversified to an enormous number of non-tobacco related businesses. To compare employment at an advertising company where perhaps a major account is a legal business you disagree with to the advocacy of commmission of illegal violence is a bit of a stretch. Again -- as a physician you will possibly have to administer care to cigarette company ad execs and gansta rappers, and probably even gangsters themselves. You are drawing an ethical line which may prove unworkable.
     
  33. indo

    indo Feed me a stray cat
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    It depends on how soon rent is due.
     
  34. Dr. Pepper

    Dr. Pepper Duffman in Disguise
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    Depends on if you can support yourself with the bad job and have a DECENT living. By support, I don't mean that you have an ethical job of pumping gas and find yourself in a 100 sq. foot shack. But if you can afford a modest apartment in a decent area with an ethical job, go for it.


    With that said, if you've got a family to feed and bills to pay, then it's almost as you have no choice, so take it. Ethics are only possible in a comfortable environment. Just look at the people affected by Hurricane Katrina. I'm sure they were all decent, law-abiding people but when a damn hurricane is coming, they found themselves stealing and pretty much killing each other to get a morsel of food. Survival and basic instincts supersede ethics sometimes I suppose.
     
  35. OSUdoc08

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    If you take this job, you should never enter the healthcare industry.

    You are obviously entering it for the money and not to help people anyway.
     
  36. Orthodoc40

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    I wouldn't even have applied for an advertising agency position. Just my own perception, but talk about boring business! Blah.
     

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