The CSSA scheme which was introduced in July 1993 is designed to offer a safety net for people who are not able to support themselves for different reason. However, there was an alleged statement that “CSSA feed the lazy” and a huge number of Hong Kong citizen label CSSA recipients nowadays. Therefore, I would like to apply the labeling perspective to the alleged abuse of CSSA via review the labeling perspective first and then use some cases together with some statistical data to illustrate the theory review in this essay.
In the following part of review the perspective, I would like to discuss deviant behavior and the power relationship between those who creating or applying labels and those being labeled before the process of labeling and then the impact of it. First of all, labeling is that a group of people is defined by another group of people as deviant no matter actually the deviant had violated rules and norm or not.
This deviance is established by social group using rules, and via assigning these rules to a certain groups of people, these labeled become outsiders. Therefore, deviance is not a person who do a wrong act but a result of being labeled by others of principle of behavior to perpetrator successfully. Whether it is deviant or not is depends on how other people response to the act. Thus, no behavior is inherently deviant which the concept of deviant act can vary over time and by different peoples. Hence what is deviance depends on certain conditions.
The conditions to which a behavior will be seen as deviant are: time, when the act occur; place, where the act happen; who, “who commits the act and who feel he has been harmed by it” (Howard S. Becker) and consequence, the outcome after acting. In addition, there is a power relationship between labeler and those being labeled. Those who erect or execute labels usually obtain benefit from the people or situation that being labeled and the labeler must have a negative label to assign and the power to maintain it stick. (Howard S. Becker) .
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