Acceptable Deviancy

Cal Thomas | Syndicated Columnist | Friday, June 10, 2011

Acceptable Deviancy

A college student friend of mine wrote in response to my column on Congressman Anthony Weiner. She said it reminded her of a topic from a program in which she is enrolled: the “Normalization of Deviancy.”

This happens when a person or a nation forgets certain virtues it once embraced. What today is normal would have been regarded as deviant by previous generations. Deviants, then, were shunned. Cultural disapproval mostly kept deviants out of the public eye. Now they parade before us. Anyone who objects has the problem, not the deviants. Look at Lady Gaga – if you must – as only one of many non-political examples.

Consider what is on TV and magazine covers, in movies and on magazine covers. It’s all a celebration of deviance. Here’s that word’s definition: “Deviating from what is considered acceptable behavior.” But what if everything is now acceptable? What then? Welcome to America in 2011.

Cal Thomas is a nationally syndicated columnist based in Washington, D.C.

This article published on May 10, 2011.