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Passive Smoking: An Active Controversy

Satisfactory Essays
An Analysis of the print ad
Passive Smoking: An Active Controversy
Our society uses media in various ways to coerce an audience to buy a certain product, believe a specific message, or assume a certain belief based on a particular ad. These ads appear in many different forms, consisting of television commercials, billboard ads, and print ads. To analyze a given message, an individual must be open-minded and be able to distinguish what the underlying theme is. Often times the message being portrayed to the consumer consists of numerous fallacies. In the print ad run from the R.J. Reynolds Company entitled Passive smoking: An active controversy, cogent reasoning is needed to analyze the message suggested to the readers. The R.J. Reynolds Company is using this paid advertisement to make readers believe that passive smoking is not harmful to one’s health.
Interpreting the ad, we find that R.J. Reynolds Company is stating that the reader is sensationalized by the media and is only feed the information that second hand smoke is harmful. In defense of their stance, R.J. Reynolds took it upon themselves to do their own research. In the ad, they reveal several studies that were conducted by “distinguished experts” stating that passive smoke is indeed much less harmful than believed by the average person. R.J. Reynolds Company states that these reports are “far less sensational-conclusions.” These so-called expert findings came from conferences that were held in Geneva, Switzerland, Bethesda, Maryland and Vienna. The advertisement goes on to state that the presidents of the two organizing groups (who are not doctors) state in a press release that environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) and lung cancer have not been successfully linked. They also state that cardiovascular damage due to ETS also has not been linked. The ad closes with a statement that attacks legislation for heightening the fears of non-smokers and making them believe that ETS is not only harmful to their health but can also be deadly.
The ad Passive Smoking: An Active Controversy, is a paid advertisement by the R.J. Reynolds Company. Keeping this in mind while reading the article, the company naturally puts an extra effort in getting their own message across to the public. The average American citizen is not ignorant and knows that ETS is harmful and can have a detrimental effect on the body, especially the lungs. The claim made in this ad suggests that the media sensationalizes ETS but after R.