Figuring out how to deter bad decisions is difficult.
People know not to touch a hot stove or else they will get burned either because they have done it previously or because they have seen others get burned. So logic tells us that knowing there is severe ramifications SHOULD be a good deterrence and a way prevent bad decisions.
The question that keeps going through my mind is why doesn’t this work for cigarette smoking?
According to the American Lung Association 224,390 new cases of lung cancer is expected to be diagnosed in 2016. Worldwide, 1,800,000 new cases of lung cancer were diagnosed and 1,600,000 deaths from lung cancer occurred in 2012. In the US in 2015 $13,400,000,000 was spent on lung cancer care (according to the NIH).
How are these facts not acting as a deterrence to smokers?
Admittedly I have never smoked but when I look at the risk/reward issue, this seems like a complete no brainer. The risk is YOU DIE. The reward is you have a disgusting habit, that smells awful and causes people to avoid you and costs a lot of money.
Currently the only deterrence that seems to be working is raising the cost through taxation. As much as I hate that concept, if it’s the only way to save some people, then it’s the right thing to do.
There are some phenomenal cures/solutions for lung cancer (and others) being worked on, but one of the great ways to help prevent it is much easier.
Have a great day!