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Sociologists Expressed Bias In Their Studys Sociology Essay

It is easy to see how sociologists express their biases in the study of deviant behavior. Since it is very hard to put an exact definition that everyone agrees on biases are therefore developed. To help combat biased behavior sociologists think of deviant behavior more as an observable object. The deviant person is the object to be studied. By studying a person in this way, the sociologists helps take care of their own judgments. Much like the natural scientist, they use a scientific method to determine deviant behavior. And making it easier for other sociologists to be able to follow the reasoning and if their ideas are based on fact not biases. Early criminologists did not have these same methods to distinguish deviant behavior. Several people were wrongly accused of being criminals and not fairly treated because of damaging stereotypes. Some of these stereotypes include skin color and mental illness. It even goes as far as criminologists determining deviant behavior based on biological traits such as looks. A large, dark man with a strong jaw would be considered deviant and pass that on to his child. Sociologists thought the cycle would continue with the next generation of deviants. Criminals considered being mentally ill which was also believed as inherited by parents. Now criminologist recognizes the social factors in determining deviant behavior. By doing this they focus on the study of the behavior instead of the person and labels. Deviant behavior is not labeled based. By using statistics, reports and surveys criminologists and other scientific peers it has helped reinforce fact and eliminate personal biases.

Chapter 2

How does social learning theory explain deviant behavior? What social forces does this theory locate that would pressure someone toward deviance?

Social learning theory explains deviant behavior by the theory of differential association. This is when a person associates with people that have more deviant and criminal’s ideas are more likely to become deviant. This can occur because instead of choosing to surround themselves with conventional ideas that typically do no create deviant behavior instead choose to surround themselves with people who commit deviant acts and therefore become deviant. It does not just include a type of associate but that the person substantially around more deviance than conventional acts. Usually the more deviant subjects the person decides to be around the more deviance. If a subject decides to be more around conventional ways and acts than there is likely to be less deviance.

Chapter 3

Evaluate the central ideas of the conflict approach to deviance. In what ways is economic and cultural conflict involved in the definition and control of deviance? Are all deviants simply oppressed workers, or is deviance caused by other factors? How so?

With evaluating the central ideas of the conflict approach theory to deviance several ideas come out. Families and friends and often work are the first things to come to mind. Social conflict has to do with a difference in wants, needs, wishes and opposite interests. People who are brought up with the same values and beliefs typically live peacefully with one another. Whereas people brought up in different countries and put together tend to have conflict. This is seen a great deal in the United States. This is the definition of cultural conflict. Where a culture has their own set of what is right and wrong and another culture feels that their “right” is the other persons “wrong”.

Social and cultural conflicts alike bring forth criminal behavior.

Chapter 4

State and defend your position on the death penalty. Are you for or against it? Why?

My view on the death penalty is not black and white. I do not feel strongly one way or the other on the issue. I do not know if it is because I have never personally known a convicted criminal. Or because I do not partake in criminal activity so have not had to think of my repercussions for an action and having to be put to death. I see both sides of the death penalty. I am both for and against it. Let us first start with all of the pros of the death penalty. There are families who lost their loved ones and are seeking retribution so they want the death penalty. There are criminals who have committed such horrible crimes to society like mass murder or serial killing so the public would like to see equal done to them. Often the jails are too crowded, so having a death penalty saves on tax money. But there is also just as many cons for the death penalty. There is no real justice in killing your loved ones killer. Keeping those few criminals alive is not really saving on large amounts of tax money. Also having a death penalty is not deterring criminals from committing these murders especially since murder is a crime of passion. When people murder they are not taking the time to think what state they are in and wondering if they will get the death penalty if they kill their wife. I do believe that instead of the death penalty convicted criminals should have life without parole. This way they do not get off easy for committing a crime. For some death would not be getting off easy. But my reasoning is a little different. I feel that living your full and entire life in solitary confinement, knowing you will never get out is a larger punishment. The criminal will see that other people will be up for parole but they will not. But again I have biased beliefs because I have never had a family member killed by a serial killer. If something that horrible were to occur I would maybe change my mind and feel better about them six feet under and instead of reading a good novel in prison.

Chapter 5

Choose either same-sex rape or child molestation, and then describe and discuss this special type of sexual assault. What are the patterns that exist, and what causes them?

Child molestation is considered rape because the victim is not old enough to be legally giving their consent to their attackers. Child molesters tend to be older than most rapists. Rapists are usually 20 and younger while the molesters are over the age of 35. Molesters have a different profile than the typical rapist. Most molesters are likely to have been victim them self to abuse as a child. They gain the trust of child and use more gentle measures on their victim. Molesters are typically male and like to be oriented with their victim. For example it could be your next door neighbor or your uncle. Unlike rapists they are unlikely to become physically violent. This suggests that child molesters do not measure up to the cultural standard of dominance over a woman. This meaning they do not feel sexually adequate and dominant over someone their own age so they seek to dominate children instead. Typically girls are likely to be the victims of child molestation. There are occasions where men will molest boys. These men are typically void of human interaction and in their own fantasy world. They are unable to feel compassion for others and just want to dominate over a weaker person. The boy victims are more likely to become molesters than someone who has not be molested.

Chapter 6

Discuss the problem of elder abuse. What are some of the causes and consequences of this type of family violence? How will the dramatic increase in the number of elderly in the future shape the problem of elder abuse?

As surprising as elder abuse is, it is a common form of abuse. It does not always show up the same way as other abuses do. The elders are neglected, often emotionally and physically abused. And because their adult children are the common perpetrators financial exploitation is common. Often elders are detached and cut out from the outside world leaving them isolated. Unlike adults, elders are more likely to be victims of abuse because they are isolated in their homes and not having as much social connections.

For the caregiver of the elder it is a highly stressful job. There is a large amount of stress and lack of funds when caring for an elder. Not only are the caregivers stressful with their own jobs and the financial situation they are also usually taking care of a family of their own. Many women end up being the caregivers of their parents. This may make them feel trapped from working outside of their home.

Abused elders suffer from depression and sleeping disorders. They shy away from younger adults because of their abusers.

Individuals that abuse elders are evident because of their severe psychological problems. Often they are alcoholics and addicted to drugs. They are unemployed and have social problems. Because of these problems they are typically financially dependent on their elders.

Chapter 8

State and discuss the myths of mental disorders. That is, what are some beliefs about the mentally ill, and why are they myths?

There are many popular myths that surround mental disorders.

One common misconception is that mental illness can never be cured. After a patient has been released there is often a public doubt of their recovery. If actuality if the patients have received their treatment patients can recover without a problem.

One of the first myths includes the fear of the mentally ill. Meany people find them extremely disturbing. Unlike most of the movies we see that depict the mentally ill as sitting in a corner screaming that is far from accurate. Typically mental patients are not violent. There is actually not a big difference between the mentally ill and healthy. Compared to the population of normal people there are very rare cases of extreme mental illness.

The last is about midwinter depression. People think that in the winter they become depressed because of the cold and lack of sunshine. Depression typically strikes during the summer because we spend more time with our loved ones than we do in the winter time.

Chapter 9

Describe and discuss the Supreme Court’s definition of sexual harassment. What is that definition, and what impact has it had on business and society? Why do some people, especially conservative men, fear this new definition?

Sexual harassment is an uninvited act of sexual nature. The U.S Supreme Court’s definition is,” Sexual harassment is any sexual conduct that makes the workplace environment so hostile or abusive to the victims that they find it hard to perform their jobs.” Since this definition has come out sexual harassment charges have increased. So many companies do not get sued they have made harassment guidelines and procedures. There are classes and educational programs also at universities and colleges so individuals can become more well versed in the definition. Many companies felt that they needed to implement these programs to protect them self. The Supreme Court ruled in 1998 that if a company had effective harassment programs that and only that could help protect them in lawsuits against them. But this is not a problem that can go away tomorrow. Sexual harassment has been a way for men to exert their dominance and control over women. Men will continue to continue traditional dominance over woman. Because the world is male dominated having a woman come into their territory they would feel threatened. Sexual harassment is about power.

Chapter 10

Describe and analyze some of the myths that surround homosexuality. What are the myths, and why do they exist?

There are a substantial amount of myths that surround homosexuality. One of the first is that gay men usually act like women and lesbians are manly. The gay men are said to talk, walk and look like woman and the same are said about lesbians to men. Generally it is hard to tell if someone is straight or gay. Some people say they have “gaydar” but they are just making stereotypical guesses about some ones sexual orientation. The second popular myth is that gay men are sexual molesters. This is another incorrect assumption.

The third myth is gay and lesbians have more role specific sexual activities. That one will be the man and one the woman. Or one would be more dominant than the other. Gays and lesbians in reality change between the two roles. Often in same sex relationships there is more equality than dominance.

Another myth is being gay or lesbian is a mental illness. Same as a straight person goes to a psychiatrist a gay or lesbian can and not be mentally ill.

Another myth is gays and lesbians can not have a satisifying sex life because they are unnatural. But studies show there is no real difference between the capacity to enjoy sex based on sexual orientation.

Another myth is gays and lesbians are obsessed with sex. Gay men have just as much sex as straight men and lesbians are less than straight women. Lastly you are completely straight or gay. But it is a matter of degree. Some people are more homosexual than others.

Chapter 12

What is alcoholism and how do some people become alcoholics? Describe the stages through which a drinker progresses, and which one is most crucial?

“World health organization defines alcoholics are those excessive drinkers whose dependence upon alcohol has attained such a degree that it shows an interference with their bodily and mental health, their interpersonal relations, and their smooth social and economic functioning.”

Alcoholism is a compulsion to drink. There are many different steps of becoming an alcoholic it doesn’t happen overnight. The first stage involves social drinking. This is before the person has become in alcoholic. They find a way to alleviate stress and relax. This begins a bad pattern of excessive drinking and hangovers. The only problem with that is the more a person drinks the more tolerant they are to alcohol so drinking to relax doesn’t work anymore. They drink more and more and don not get drunk anymore. In this stage people are still in control of their lives. But it is beginning and downward spiral of psychological and psychological problems.

The second stage the drinker begins to show signs of alcohol abuse. One of the first signs of this is a blackout. A blackout is a loss of consciousness or memory due to a lack of circulation of the brain. It is a type of amnesia. A blackout occurs when a person consumes alcohol past their tolerance level. This type of blackout makes people lose portions of their day. Other people watching them could account they were completely conscious and having a good time but in actuality are suffering from a blackout. In this stage they have become psychologically addicted to alcohol and start to crave it. They will have a intense desire and feel unsatisfied unless they drink. This is when drinking will start to occur during the day not only the night.

During the third stage the drinker becomes not only mentally addicted to alcohol but now physically. Much like any other drug addiction the body will start to suffer from withdrawals. This is evident from the shakes and chills. Without help it is almost impossible for a drinker to stop because alcohol has control over them. Like most addicts they say they can stop whenever they want to. In actuality they drink until their supply is done or they cannot continue because they are too drunk to. In front of friends and co workers they invent excuses for the drinking. Because nobody wants to be around an alcoholic it leads to the last stage which is isolation. They are fully dependent on alcohol and have a fear that their supply will end. This is one reason for the many stashes alcoholics keep around their house. Since they have isolated themselves socially they keep drinking for days and do nothing else.

Chapter 13

Discuss some of the reasons why white-collar deviance is so unique. That is, what are some features of this type of deviance that are are not found among other types of deviance?

White collar deviance is so unique because it is composed of a small group of people. It is limited to business and professional men. It is one of the only occupationally centered deviances that only can occur by white collar workers. This rules out blue collar workers from this form of deviance. Not only is the location the reason it is a white collar crime by the way it is carried out. Typically a white collar thief is not likely to get caught. Unlike blue collar thieves they are highly educated and have good resources. White collar deviance is set around economic deviance because white collar companies usually are highly financial. Understanding the way corporations work help sociologists understand white collar deviance.

Chapter 14

Analyze some of the reasons why auto theft and carjacking have increased so dramatically? What has pushed these types of robbery to new heights? How might this type of property crime be better controlled?

There are many reasons why auto theft and carjacking have increased dramatically. In the mid 20th century car theft was more trivial. Often cars were stolen just for an easy joy ride unlike today it is a multibillion dollar enterprise. It is a easier way to earn a substantial amount of money quickly. Car thieves are typically lower class. They come from low income families that suffer from racial discrimination and feel they cannot have a normal job. The thieves have more opportunities for stealing cars than years ago. Due to violent crimes police officers cannot devote large resources to auto theft. Sentencing is light because of overcrowing in jails.

Stolen car and car parts are sold.

Insurance fraud. Collect insurance fraud.

Advanced security systems encourage cars to be stolen at gun point.

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