They named their most delicious desserts "Death By Chocolate" and, much worse, "Chocolate Suicide."
Mercifully, the word reached them — probably in the quizzical eyes of bereaved customers — that death is rarely cute and suicide never is.
But this isn't about that.
This Is An Ethical Challenge.
Imagine you work for JELL-O brand gelatin.
And imagine you are a righteous, somewhat prim fellow. You live with pursed lips.
Right. Yes. "Foul wind." You catch foul wind that your good nutritious offering, trusted by mothers who feed it to sick children, is being used by naughty people for — can you believe this? — JELL-O wrestling.
No! Please, Lord, no. Scantily clad women must no longer embrace and tumble in pools of our dear product. (Please do not linger on the image above, which is not taken from Black Swan.)
What are your rights as as the owner of the JELL-O brand?
Perhaps you might like the association, because it's hip and naughty, but not really so very bad.
But what if you don't like it. Can you prevent its improper use? "Hey, ladies. Please! I do say: cease and desist!"
What If It Were A Lot More Important?
What if you are the maker of a drug that is used to slow the heart during heart surgery? That's a nice product! Thank you for making such an important, life-saving product.
What if the State of Ohio decides to use your drug — an off label use, if ever there was one — to administer an overdose on death row? What do you think about your life-saving product being used to end lives? (Sponsorship opportunity?)
Can you stop it? If you don't stop it, are you ethically responsible? Even partly?
If you do stop it, might Ohio turn to drowning people in JELL-O?