Selling Alcohol in Poor Districts: Reflection
Perhaps, all people have seen the poor or homeless alcoholics who wonder without any emotions on their faces on the streets of the city. They create a great contrast with bright slogans on the boutiques, with successful people in trendy clothes and clean expensive cars. It seems that they belong to another world, that exists somewhere, where “normal” people can not go.
However, everyone can go there and see how human beings who were unlucky in their lives for several times, made several mistakes or lost their chance, exist in the poorest districts. After reading the chapter for the lecture, I have realized that marketing can be called one of the reasons that makes the lives of the poor people worse. For example, marketing promotes selling alcohol everywhere to everyone who is adult enough to make a choice. Though, there are many people in poor districts who are not under-aged, but who have serious problems with alcohol consumption.
It is quite difficult to state whether it is ethical or not to sell people something they do not fully understand what and why they are buying. This dilemma can be seen in the poor districts of the cities. People who live there supposedly have many problems. Lack of money, poor education, increased criminal rate and many people who have been in prisons live there. The majority of them are likely to be drug abusers or alcoholics because of the difficulties they have in lives. Though, the supermarkets and the small shops in the district are full of alcohol. Depressed poor people go there and buy it to escape the reality, and they do it mostly every day. As the result, their lives become even worse than they used to be, because they do nothing to improve their conditions.
I have seen many times in my life that neglected people who seem to have an alcohol addiction buy another bottle of gin to escape from their reality. I asked myself whether it is normal to sell those people alcohol. It was evident for everyone that those people were ill, they were not able to control their desires, their spendings and their lives. The only thing they needed was the doctor and the medical care, not another bottle of alcohol.
However, the marketing does not agree with such statement. According to it, every person has a choice whether he/she wants to buy something or not, and the shop gives this opportunity to chose. The ideas about equal rights, democracy and freedom support the claims of the marketing. I can not decide whether it is normal to let people kill themselves with alcohol if they do not understand what they are doing. It is even worse than selling alcohol to minors, because the alcoholics do not control their desire to escape rationally. It seems like democracy gives people an opportunity to die freely and marketing shows the easiest way to the metaphorical gun.
This ethical problem does not give me the ideas about how I might be able to improve my work in the marketing sphere. It only asks new questions that have no absolutely right answer. I have to think about them for many years and then I might be able to solve the dilemma of priority of business, equal opportunities and obvious self harm. However, this ethical problem can have practical implications. For example, there might appear certain regulations that will not cut the rights of all people to buy alcohol, but will restrict its sells in the zones of risk. Selling alcohol in the poor districts at night to people who look like really ill alcoholics or who are already drunk and aggressive might decrease the death rates.