Different Crimes And Social DeviencesIn the nineties the world and society has been faced with many different crimes andsocial deviancies, most of which have been as a result of rebellion and a form ofexpression. Whether it is to force a change or to create something new deviance is at astrong high. At the dawn of a new millenium some of society feel the need to expressthemselves in proscriptive norms and “leave our mark” on the world.The words “deviance” and “crime” are two words often mistaken for each other.Crime is a unlawful activity while deviance is a behavior that is different from that of theaccepted social or moral standards. Deviance most of the time is the “gateway” to crime.A strong example of this would be the recent exploits at the Woodstock 99 music festival.In the September 2nd issue of Rolling Stone magazine the author Kurt Loder writes aboutthe transgression that takes place when the music festival turns sour.
He writes about howamid the music and peaceful motto of the festival some individuals feel the need to bemalicious and irregular. He goes on to tell that when the band Limp Bizkit performed thesong “Break Stuff” the violence took place. There was an “unending blizzard of emptyplastic water bottles sailing through the air and bouncing off skulls further down front,across the field people were ripping up the plywood barriers..
.and launching big, splinterycrowd-surfing boards atop a sea of upsteached hands…The bonfires roaring out of control,the looting, the explosions, the whole stupid riot. Festival security, such as it was,collapsed in the face of this sudden war-zone situation.” There was also accounts ofdifferent and unusual sexual activities. Kurt’s interpretation was like most others.
This daythat was supposed to be a social gathering in a peaceful atmosphere turned into a battlefield of abnormal demeanor and a place abundant in deviant behavior.The events that took place are a perfect example of crime and deviance. Theactions that were performed were both unlawful and abnormal. The conflict perspective ofsociology states that groups in society are engaged in a continuous power struggle forcontrol or resources.
The Woodstock events can share a similarity with this perspective.The riots and turmoil were due in part to unsanitary conditions and high prices onnecessary items. The bathrooms at the festival were left uncleaned, the sleeping conditionswere horrible and the prices for water were inhumanely high. This is the conclusion thatwas made to the reason for the riots and destruction. Though not a reason for violence theactions were done as a message and as a retaliation for the obscure conditions. This was a“struggle for control.”The functionalist perspective was assumed by the organizers and security ofWoodstock. This was an assumption that the society was a stable, orderly system.
Thepeople in charge of the event took for granted that the people attending were stable andtame. As was evident the “society” at Woodstock did not share a common set of valuesand beliefs.The sociologist Walter Reckless (1967) said that certain factors draw people todeviance. He said that an individual may be persuaded by deviant subcultures, mediadepictions and their own feelings of frustration, hostility and inferiority. This is clear in theriots that took place. In the case many individuals were in an inhumane atmosphere andbecame frustrated by what was going on and about not being able to change what washappening.
Many people felt trapped and inferior. Some people succumbed to deviant actsby themselves and many followed the others in their hostility. Either way Walter Reckless’theory of deviance was correct in this case. Edwin Sutherland (1939) had a similar case in his differential association theory, hesays that “individuals have a greater tendency to deviate from societal norms when theyfrequently associate with persons who are more favorable toward deviance thanconformity.” This is another theory that can be said as a reason for the Woodstock riots.
People who were normally not deviant were persuaded to a more deviant personality whenthey were surrounded by the deviant individuals who were causing havoc around thefestival fields. They learned the “necessary techniques the motive, drives, rationalizations,and attitudes of deviant people.”There are many views on crime and deviance and many theories to why they occur.The events that happened at Woodstock are among