During my time in Yogyakarta, I had the privilege of travelling to the tobacco farming area with my group where I met a group of amazing people from Muhammadiyah Tobacco Control Centre, (Communication Of Muhammadiyah Tobacco Control Centre Yogyakarta, 2019).
From these people, I was able to speak with Uje, who is a participant in this group with the aim of campaigning against tobacco in Indonesia. Uje, grew up in a very strict religious household who based on their beliefs, forbid smoking in their family and therefore never smoked themselves. Therefore, Uje doesn’t recommend tobacco use and is completely opposed and appalled by the idea of children using it in particular, but admits to having tried it before himself. He states that he tried smoking in a social environment so that his friends didn’t think that he was a “coward” for not joining them but has now become well aware of the dangers of tobacco use and has come to the conclusion that it is not worth it to sacrifice your own well being in order not to be made fun of by your friends. Uje appreciates the income which is provided by the tobacco farming, (The Agricultural Economy of Indonesia, 1952), and use in Indonesia and therefore believes that the government should inform the citizens of the impacts and dangers and support the mission of the Muhammadiyah Tobacco Control Centre.
He suggests initially running tobacco advertisements at night where it will only be viewed by adults therefore preventing use of tobacco by children. I found it very interesting to look at Uje’s perspective of tobacco as he is actively trying to promote a greater future for Indonesia by minimising tobacco use. However, he continues to acknowledge the ongoing impact which is has on the economy and therefore promotes use of tobacco when the individual is conscious of the health dangers (Consequences of E-Cigarettes, 2018) and when they are old enough to make the decision for themselves rather than based on the pressures of their friends and advertisements which are constantly surrounding them.
Metcalf J.E, 1952, The Agricultural Economy of Indonesia, U.S Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C.
National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine 2018. Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.
Universitas Ahmad Dahlan, 2019, Communication Of Muhammadiyah Tobacco Control Centre Yogyakarta, Indonesia, viewed 19th of December 2019, <http://eprints.uad.ac.id/15836/1/NASKAH%20PUBLIKASIKU.pdf>.