"IF YOU SMOKE AND DIE OF CANCER, every obituary will take advantage of your death as an opportunity to remind the living to quit smoking."That's not taking advantage, it's called good reporting. On top of that, it's public service.
In spite of the overwhelming evidence that smoking causes cancer, strokes, and heart disease, those addicted to cancer sticks often remain in deep denial.
About ten years ago, a person in their early 40's I knew suffered a heart attack. The first thing the doctor said was, "Stop smoking!" The person's spouse approached me to ask for pointers on how to handle things. The spouse would crave cigarettes and all their closest friends were smokers. I couldn't imagine that even addicted smokers would be heedless of the risks to a friend or be able to deny the hazards.
I was wrong! Within a week of my conversation with the concerned spouse, I ran into the couple's "best friends." They brought up with me the advice of the doctor and dismissed it as so much quackery. They said that they had known people who'd had heart attacks or cancer who never had smoked.
It seems to me that every time a prominent person like Peter Jennings dies as the result of ingesting those tar-and-nicotine time bombs, it would be criminal for the press not to mention it.