Pfuhl (1998) points out that a deviant or deviant behavior is that which goes against the normal practices, beliefs and norms of a society or a community in relation to their culture or literally any act that can be deemed as wrong depending on the society in place and by this automatically it becomes a crime in the face of the society.
But what we have to keep in mind is different societies have different norms and taboos and what is accepted in one place may in another society considered as a serious taboo with very serious consequences. Some taboos are very serious offences like murder and rape so if anyone commits any of these it will result in very harsh penalties leading to being cast aside by society. When a person does this it’s considered as a crime and the person can easily be labeled as a criminal.Most of what people do or acquire that results in deviance is social but have been several arguments in relation to what makes a person deviate from the society norms but to no avail and this has led to the emergence of various theories in relation to the same. One of the beliefs about deviant behavior is that it’s learned as all the human behaviors are acquired hence as a person grows he or she also slowly continues to acquire some deviant traits and its not developed in as ingle day (Cregan, 2010). But there is argument that in some cases it’s favored by some biological factors and this is subject to a lot of debate because the notion that genetically some humans are born with traits that favor deviant behavior is very debatable unless tests are done to prove otherwise.
Generally it’s a process before just a single did of deviance can easily change from a single act to leading you to being labeled as a criminal by the society because of the same deed(S).Cregan (2010) explains that some sociologists believe that some people are predisposed to criminal behavior biologically due to earlier genetic traits but this is strongly disputed. While some acts of deviance can be signs of rebellion by an individual due believe that there is unjust or unfair treating directed towards him a case example is when people riot due to the reforms put in place as they believe they were not consulted on the same issues yet it affects them directly resulting in the feeling of being cast aside for example in case of a family household the child may deviate from the normal due to the fact of inhibition by their parent while also family feuds can also result a child seeking audience by doing some deviant behaviors’ .In some situations its passed down the generations as a child will behave like it saw in the family when a child but others a result of a negative environment like mass media and in other situations peer groups. A perfect example of the deviants that are generational is the US where the southern part there racist aspect still exists and this is because of it being passed down (Pfuhl, 1998). This will result in a reaction by the institutions in place to control the riots and eventually chaos arise where people are arrested and given penalties de to the same, this results in them feeling even more left out and this results in more action s against the society and the end result is harsher punishment and the society treating them as misfits in the name criminals who don’t want to follow preset rules and regulations.
There different types of deviance for example the primary deviance where a person, this happens when a person commits a mild offence which mostly is brought about by vices like greed or jealousy of which if not checked probably can develop into something bigger which in noticed probably but no stiff penalties or punishments are given and may not stop the person from doing the same mistake again but if the person does it again and this time the society notices , it may result in the person being identified as a deviant and the result will be some very harsh form of punishment given to the person as he/ she is labeled a deviant (Cregan, 2010).This punishment accompanied with labeled tagged to him as a deviant kind of makes him tougher or immune to the discrimination and since already been labeled as such, it may result in him deciding to be the person the society or institution in charge has labeled him leading to more crimes and this will result in an end product of a real criminal. Another instant where a person can be labeled a criminal or a deviant to a criminal is when you are raised I a community for example back in the slave era where they believed the white skinned people were superior to black skinned or the slaves who treated just as a property.So the children born in this society believe that’s what is right and if even they go to another society which believes in equality of all races it results in a person where doing a deed that portrays the same beliefs once believing that is what is right while the society will judge harshly as that is against what they believe a repeat of the same will result in the person being labeled as a racist which result in harsh punishment while he’s judged as a criminal. So with further deviant activity will lead to more hostile and alienation by the society leading to the character accepting the ascribed title in society as a criminal hence committing more and more crimes and this as a result of the deviant acts being strengthened by each time the individual receives punishment and acceptance of the same because of belief that despite what changes might be made the image and treatment by society is never going change (Berg & Bass, 2008).Sometimes people may do things out of ignorance and although it’s no excuse or defense, this maybe in some instances considered when giving penalties by institutions in place to monitor various societies.
and if an individual tries to correct himself or admits the crime committed by confession the society may be a bit soft on the individual if he promises to conform from the and never repeat it resulting in the society being a bit lenient and casting him aside which will result in due time the person being accepted by the society and if the same is maintained the person may be eventually treated like any other person and the crimes forgotten resulting in changing from being considered a criminal to a non criminal due to conforming. For example is when one picks up an item belongs to someone else and while at this the individual is caught and when confronted admits to the mistake while asking for apologies, this may lead to leniency on him as due to no resistance and the admittance of the mistake hence no stiff punishments but maybe just a stern warning of never to repeat the same.Berg & Bass (2008), adds that a crime is a deviant behaviour that is stated so legally by the institutions that run situations and by this some of the deviant behaviors may not be set a legal crime and by this it seems the behavior may not get any punishment hence result it being a deviant behavior that is not criminal. Another instance is when a public can change its behavior and beliefs where like in the African traditional setup where some societies didn’t allow practices deeming them illegal for example a situation like where it was thought that twins were bad luck one of them was killed and this now is clearly wrong and so what was once a crime or those who ignored this become criminals but this is no more.What of societies that believe in harming their neighbors as a way of life where young children are taught from the beginning that their main enemy is the next community so they grow with resentment for each other till they come discover its not so due to awareness programs example in Africa where tribal wars are common due to resentment or other ignorant beliefs. Another situation is where some societies believed that some activities or disciplines were specifically for some gender and not the like maybe being a wrestler was thought to be for males only and those females who ventured were thought to be odd or treated odd which could result in them revolting against the society and hence deemed as criminals or miscreants.
But now anyone can do anything and this has removed the notion that initially was and that made some things criminal and now have since overturned them making in not criminal (Deviance: Behavior that Violates Norms, 2007).But a serious point of contention is what criteria are used to define a certain acts as criminal or not except the obvious ones. Apart from universal rules of humanity like not committing murder some rules in relation to deviancy is just tricky because different societies believe differently so what happens when one crosses from one to the other, should the same rules apply (Deviance, 2009). Because in some countries or cultures some kinds of people or groups like the gay are prosecuted and it’s very illegal while others the same groups are even allowed to have legal unions. Another example is like the arb world like Dubai where drinking of alcohol in public or showing of affection can result in stiff penalties or even imprisonment while most of the world it’s a very normal affair hence can be a tricky affair when deciding if it’s a crime a or not.
Another scene where a criminal can easily transform to a non criminal is a case example of the Islamic militants who to the rest of the world they are terrorists who do nothing but destroy lives and property but when they go back to their homelands they are more of heroes in the face the society.To sum up this discussion, whatever the circumstance that pushes someone to deviant behavior whether social, physical or biological and how this can be eventually turn one to a criminal or not mostly depends on the surrounding of the person and whether its supportive either positively y or negatively but its still a very controversial topic in the society and a lot of debate is still ongoing with no conclusive option or result but either way it’s a major problem in our society and If it can be solved then it will be a huge service to mankind as a whole as this may avert some catastrophes in the future (Deviance: Behavior that Violates Norms, 2008). Cause to think that some of the past disasters could averted had something been changed then the world is would be a better place. So we shall never know for sure but if possible we hope it can be detected early to prevent some of the disputes that arise from branding one a criminal and out of sheer spite for the person or vice versa leading to catastrophic results.