Crime And Deviance

1021 Words5 Pages
In Belize today, our Society is being plagued by crime daily and very often as you listen to the daily news someone is dead either my being shot, hit and run, suicide or some other form of death. Other times minor incidences are reported and often times we wonder why did this even make the news? It is nothing unusual it is just petty (deviance). Therefore, we need to define the difference between crime and deviance in a simple way; crime is the breaking of legal norms, while deviance is the breaking of social norms. Sometimes these can be the same ‘norm’ which is broken, although in some cases certain acts of deviance are not seen as criminal and some criminal acts are not socially viewed as deviant. Crime and deviance can be categorised by…show more content…
To put it simply, crime is constructed by the use of social laws and the decisions of those with power to make some of these social laws and the decisions of those with power to make some of these social laws into criminal laws. Crime can be seen as a social construction as what is legal or illegal in one society or culture may not be in another, the same can be said of deviance. Crime is repeatedly viewed as a ‘physical fact’ by the government or media. However it can be argued that when one thinks of acts which are criminal in one place yet are not in another that crime is a social construction. To refer back to the point of these with power deciphering which acts are criminal, it can also be argued that those with power (e.g. government) define these acts as criminal, whether socially deviant or not, to suit their own purpose and to control certain parts of society. This argument may help to explain why different societies create different laws in different places, the answer being that other governments may have different agendas which suit the social order of their society. This argument about social power supports the view that crime is socially constructed. While discussing crime as a social construction it is also important to differentiate between crime and deviance. Not all violation of social norms is criminal. It is also stated that there are different kinds of norm including sexual norms, religious norms and health norms, to convey the point that not all deviance is criminal. Society view people who disturb health norms as ill, sexual norms as pervert and religious norms as heretics. As someone who is ill is not seen as a criminal by society, this perfectly shows how not all deviance from social norms is
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