It is a fact that human beings always have different behaviors. The majority of individuals depict good behaviors whereas a few individuals have very queer behaviors. However, it is critical to highlight that there are no permanent behaviors. This implies that behaviors are prone to change. As time progresses, one stands a chance of changing his or her behaviors with regard to the environment in which he dwells. A behavior change may be towards the negative side or the positive side (Goode and Nachman 31). If people change from depicting good behavior to bad behavior, the result may be their imminent involvement in criminal activities. This is considered socially unethical and immoral. However, behavioral changes that involve turning away from queer behaviors to good behaviors are considered positive behavioral changes. Such changes are associated with successes and progress in society. There are a number of behaviors that are normally accepted by society. The majority of these behaviors are good behaviors, involving reformation behaviors where individuals opt to depict good deeds and shun bad ones (Goode and Nachman 34). However, it is also important to underscore the fact that the majority of people may have bad behaviors that form major inhibitors to the development of society. Such bad behaviors are considered ethically wrong and morally unacceptable by society in general.
Deviant behaviors refer to manners that tend to drift away from the morally and ethically accepted behaviors with regards to social perspective. Such behaviors are always considered unethical and full of immoral contents and intents by society. Deviant behaviors are always associated with elements of crime, assault, and violence. There are two major forms of social deviance. These include formal and informal social deviance. Formal social deviance are those whose impacts may require the involvement of the law (Goode and Nachman 34). These may include criminal activities comprising of theft, robbery with violence, rape, and child abuse. In addition, other forms of formal deviant behaviors include infidelity and adultery with regards to different views of different societies. On the contrary, informal deviant behaviors may include such things as picking a nose when people are taking a meal at the dining table. The impacts of such behaviors require no involvement of the law to offer a solution. However, their solutions mostly lie in one’s ability to engage in in-depth comprehension coupled with instinctive forms of common sense.
It is of crucial significance to note that such deviant behaviors always function to break the dominant norms of society (Goode and Nachman 54). This involves disruption of the normal and conventional way in which the society views some issues. Deviant behaviors always erode the sense of morality in the society as well as promote involvement in social vices by unsuspecting individuals. However, it is prudent to acknowledge the fact that several theories exist to explain the causes of such deviant behaviors. These theories include the structural strain theory, labeling theory, social control theory, and the theory of differential association.
Child abuse is one of the behaviors considered socially immoral in several societies. It is important to note that several human behaviors amount to abuse of children. Child abuse refers to any behavior that deprives children their rights and affects their mental, psychological, and physical development (Goode and Nachman 34). Some of the activities that amount to child abuse include children providing labor for either profit or non-profit based organizations. In addition, child abuse may involve inflicting pains on children. This may be through beating up the children, mistreating, or subjecting them to severe conditions that may endanger their lives. Such actions are considered socially unacceptable, morally incorrect, and ethically retrogressive (Rainwater, 53). The issue of child abuse was discovered in the late nineteenth century as one of the deviant human behaviors. The discovery took place in the year 1870s with regards to Linda Gordon’s findings. The issue drew a lot of global debate concerning the effective ways to deal with such a social vice.
The wording originated from the periods when the Waspish ladies together with other gentlemen turned their attention in order to focus on the matters affecting children (Goode and Nachman 74). The children who were under critical focus in this issue were those who came from the poor families and migrated to the United States. From this migrant and poor background, the issue of child abuse was labeled as being amongst the morally unethical and ethically unacceptable issues in the society. This led to the rise of several social control agencies assigned the role of championing for the rights of children. One of the social control agencies at that time was the Massachusetts Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children. This social control agency was given the name “the Cruelty.” This social control agency ensured that the laws against children abuse were made official right from the late 1960s. The laws governing the rights of children, barring the acts of beating of children, and denying the children their moral rights were then officially enacted (Goode and Nachman 56).
The discovery and labeling of child abuse as a deviant human behavior followed several social forces. Some of these social forces include the issue of poverty, illnesses, and political influences that may make children vulnerable to experience abuse. Parents from the aforementioned backgrounds usually promote child battering or, in general, child abuse (Clinard and Robert 61). The victims who suffered from child abuse were portrayed as pre-delinquents. The attention of the court to enact laws championing the rights of children borrowed from the fact that the victims of the child abuse were majorly children whose families were characterized by poverty. In addition, another factor that prompted the courts to enact the laws guarding children against deviant behaviors is that the children were helpless and had nothing to protect them from mistreatment at the hands of their parents. Therefore, it was in a moral sense that they came up with laws that prohibited child beating.
However, in recognition of the issue of child abuse as a major social deviant behavior, several factors acted to impede the speed of recognition of the issue. One of these factors had to do with the early doctors. Several research findings suggest that several doctors who were attending to the children, who were victims of child abuse in several emergency rooms, were oblivious of the fact that “abuse” may have been a possible diagnosis to the cause of the children’s plights (Rainwater 35). Therefore, majority of the children were being treated and discharged without the doctors noticing the causes of the sufferings that they underwent. This slowed the rate of recognition and labeling the issue of child abuse amongst the social deviant behaviors. In addition, there was a tendency of several doctors to disagree with the fact that parents could abuse their children through inflicting such pains (Clinard and Robert 29). This means that such doctors maintained the perception that parents were considered wise and benevolent. Therefore, they could not easily inflict any form of pain to their children.
The best a parent could do is to look for ways in which the children may become safe as well as prevent anything that could inflict pain on them. However, in this perception, such doctors were wrong in their opinions since some parents were so cruel to their children and contributed towards infliction pain to them. In addition to the above argument, it is crucial to acknowledge the fact that health practitioners always practice under certain codes of conduct. One of these includes the issue of “norm of confidentiality.” Health practitioners are always required to maintain high levels of confidentiality with regards to their relationship with the clients. Therefore, doctors are not expected to disclose any information, whether serious or less serious to the public (Rainwater, 39). They are expected to always maintain a high level of confidentiality and can only reveal patient information under very critical conditions. In this scenario, the doctors treated the parents to those children who faced parental abuse as their real clients. However, they did not recognize the children who suffered from child abuse as their real clients. They thus kept the information as secretive and confidential as possible from the court (Clinard and Robert 45). This acted to impede the speed of recognition of child abuse as amongst the social deviant behaviors.
The issue of child abuse has several effects in the lives of children. These effects may include emotional influences, physical, as well as sexual effects. Some of the physical effects of child abuse include unexplained burns, bite marks, as well as bruises in the body of the children (Rainwater, 25). These cause injuries to the child. In addition, child abuse may result to emotional effects including depression, lack of concentration as well as extreme cases of stress. These may hider several mental, psychological and social developments in the child, thereby impacting negatively on the child’s wellbeing. Moreover, the issue of child abuse may result to lack of concentration of the children in generally all environments (Goode and Nachman 28). This is quite critical since it may hamper the success of the children with regards to issues touching on education. The issue of child abuse may also lead to extreme cases of fear amongst the children, as well as excessive aggression amongst the children. This is quite unhealthy towards the development of such victims of child abuse (Clinard and Robert 53).
The legal prohibition of the issue of child abuse has greatly contributed to the recognition of the welfare of children. In the event that this deviant behavior was not prohibited, several children could have lost their lives. This indicates that majority of the parents use different mechanisms for inflicting pain on their children. Majority of these ill treatments involve beatings that may cause injuries to the children. Such injuries may lead to the deaths of such children (Clinard and Robert 43). In addition, the fact that the families whose children were regular victims of child abuse were poor would also contribute to high rates of deaths. This implies that upon inflicting such pains to the children and injuring them, such families would be unable to take those children to the hospitals to acquire medication.
This could have been quite critical in causing the escalating cases of death amongst such children and led to escalating cases of grief within the society. In addition, the society could have been faced with extreme cases of underdevelopment since the loss of such children would mean lack of professionals in various fields in the future. Therefore, the society would be dealt a major blow with regards to diversity of people with various abilities. It is also prudent to note that if such a crime would not have been legally prohibited, criminal cases involving child abuse would increase. This could not have been good to the society since several children could have died following such cases of violation of their rights.
Clinard, Marshall B, and Robert F. Meier. Sociology of Deviant Behavior. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning, 2011. Print.
Goode, Erich, and Nachman Ben-Yehuda. Moral Panics: The Social Construction of Deviance. Chichester, U.K: Wiley-Blackwell, 2009. Internet resource.
Rainwater, Lee. Deviance & Liberty: Social Problems and Public Policy. New Brunswick: AldineTransaction, 2011. Print.
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