But the point that I'd like to make about this is the relationship between smoking and socioeconomic status. As a 2012 scientific review put it, "Smoking prevalence is higher among disadvantaged groups." Which means that smoking is just one more way the rich can look down upon and morally judge the poor.
Why do the poor smoke more than the rich?
In Texas where I live a pack of cigarettes costs about $6.00. There are about twenty cigarettes in a pack. The average smoker smokes a half pack or less a day.
Basically, for about $3.00 you've got yourself a pleasurable activity to carry you through the day. Hedonically speaking, that's not a bad deal.
Of course, there is more to smoking than hedonic pleasure. There is the cancer risk, the odors to contend with (on your clothing or person and in your car or dwelling), and that social stigma we mentioned.
In the face of those negatives the rich opt for different pleasures. You know what I like to do? I like to go out to eat. Or to a movie. Or read a book. Or go on a vacation.
But all those hedonic pleasures cost more money. Let alone requiring a car. For example, it costs my family of four about $20 to eat at Taco Bell. Taco Bell. Twenty dollars. And anything beyond fast food is way, way more expensive than that.
Here's my point. When the rich want to do something pleasurable they usually go out to eat or to some entertainment. Or they go shopping.
And on top of all that, the rich go on vacations where they spend hundreds and thousands of dollars.
That's what hedonism looks like for the rich. Eating out, shopping, going to entertainments, taking vacations.
The poor, by contrast, smoke. It's a pleasure they can afford. But at the end of the day, despite the moralization smoking gets, it's no less hedonistic than the pleasures of the rich.