The Social Harmony of Social Chaos

993 words | 4 page(s)

To even invoke the word society is giving a shape to a paradigm of various perspectives that fuse together to make the world run smoother. Society in many regards is like any organism or mechanical device that may have bells and whistles and clanking things. They exist for the sole purpose of survival of that species. The functionality of various parts is what makes this structure run efficiently, in theory. This is just a brief description of structural functionalism which is one of several ways that society has been defined. In the following paragraphs the writer will analyze recent headline news and decipher the different ways that the article can be viewed from a sociological viewpoint.

On November 7, 2018 a man walked into the Border Line Bar and Grille located in Ventura California and killed twelve people with a semi-automatic weapon. Among his victims were three women and nine men. Several of the victims were college students, one bouncer, a marine vet, and one officer who was the first to arrive on the scene. The gunman, who was identified as David Long, was a marine veteran himself was also found deceased from self-inflicted gun shot wombs.

puzzles puzzles
Your 20% discount here.

Use your promo and get a custom paper on
"The Social Harmony of Social Chaos".

Order Now
Promocode: custom20

This narrative is an all too familiar one in this day and time. Every week the US media broadcast about how some assailant with out cause murdered multiple individuals. Americans are so accustomed to hearing these stories that we can no longer hear the echo of gunshots and the flashing lights of the ambulances are just another distraction.

The pivotal point of the structural functionalism philosophy is that all moving parts work together for the good of the creation. But something is amiss, these shootings have becoming more and more frequent, and no tangible solution is in sight. The structure itself is fragmented so the functionality is void.

Cleary with these stories coming so frequently there is something mistuned in the social harmony. The social rhythm is off, but there has to be a reason why. In this case David Long was a combat veteran so there is a chance that he suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. But layered explanation for these outbursts in violence runs from a lack of mental health services to a moral decaying of basic humanity.

Karl Marx had a much different view of human interaction, he believed that relationships are defined by conflict between classes rather than planning. Social conflict theory revolves around these principles of contrast of social parameters. A centerpiece of the theory is distinction of social class warfare. The upper class, bourgeois, holds sway over the lower economic classes called the proletarians. Eventually due to the process of social evolutions the bourgeois would be over thrown by the lower classes, but what does this have to do with PTSD.

An ongoing argument in the political arena is the continue fight over mental illness and mental debility. On the surface it seems like a practical argument, but it houses a much deeper sociological problem.

During the 1980’s the Reagan administration felt mental stability was not a high priority and decided a process of defunding state and federal resources in the name of a balance economy. Most publically funded mental institution still are having a difficult time maintaining monies and it comes down to a version of political Russian Rolette. Funding is a point of politics versus a point of need. Politics is a sonny for class warfare since usually one political class represents one versus another.

The upper class (bourgeois) generally has privately funded institutions or can afford their own versions of mental assistance. Historically they have been concerned with lowering taxes versus allocating funds towards institutions for public use. This is when the conflict begins, the status quo exploits the tax system for their own personal agenda. The outcome is that there are far too many citizens who have need of mental evaluation and services who cannot afford it, the insurance debate would reaffirm this philosophy. Without at least the evaluation these random acts of violence are sure to continue and more then likely escalate. The two sides of this paradigm are in conflict, but it very much comes down to a classes system.

In this same example there is another hot button topic that very much has a range of perspectives. Gun use or gun availability is an interesting theme of social interaction. Social interaction is more or less the way human beings defined themselves in their reality. Through rhetoric, social commentary, interaction, and experience all individual’s opinions are formed and take on meaning. In this regard it is easy to see why guns are a complex subject matter.

There are very few things in our society are as polarizing socially as guns. Most
American social interaction with guns is a byproduct of entertainment as well as propaganda. Guns represent security and the threat. In a sense guns define themselves as the source of fear and the resolution to fear. And all the grey areas in between are simply each individual’s social interaction with these weapons. A person whose father is a police officer or soldier may believe that gun availability is paramount for stability and maintaining of social harmony. This is in conflict with an individual who is the victim of a gun crime who views it as an archaic method of law enforcement. The gun argument truly is two sides of the same coin but with multiple outcomes, and these various outcomes are deeply based on individual social interaction.

  • Kingsbury, Nancy, and John Scanzoni. “Structural-functionalism.” Sourcebook of family theories and methods. Springer, Boston, MA, 2009. 195
  • Spitzer, Robert J. Politics of gun control. Routledge, 2015.
  • Walton, Richard E., and Robert B. McKersie. A behavioral theory of labor negotiations: An analysis of a social interaction system. Cornell University Press, 19
  • Weathers, Frank W., et al. “The PTSD Checklist (PCL): Reliability, validity, and diagnostic utility.” annual convention of the international society for traumatic stress studies, San Antonio, TX. Vol. 462. 1993.

puzzles puzzles
Attract Only the Top Grades

Have a team of vetted experts take you to the top, with professionally written papers in every area of study.

Order Now