Tampa is a strip club located in California, USA and is one of the liveliest places at night. During my course work I chose this place to be carried out my research in by attending one of their Wednesday night shows organized by the clubs management. Its major purpose was to celebrate the clubs jubilee that marked fifty years of service since its establishment. The event was also designed to award some of the clubs loyal and outstanding workers that included strip girls and members of the management. The turnout to the event was overwhelming, since the tickets on sale were oversubscribed, and most of the people had to be turned away. On enquiry there were nine hundred people in attendance, from which more than half were men of the average age of twenty to forty years. The rest included young and energetic ladies whose average age was twenty five. The event was scheduled to start at nine o`clock in the evening and extended up to five the following morning. Since I had not acquired an early ticket I was faced by unforeseen challenges in trying to gain access. This was not the case to the many young ladies who had similar problems but seemed to enjoy the privilege of their beauty and familiarity with the management officers manning the entrance. Finally, I found my way inside after some three hours of waiting, but regardless of the wait the whole event was entertaining and educative.
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This event, as I later came to learn through interaction, was one of the biggest organized by the club in its recent history. Apart from the initial speeches by the club’s board members, the rest of the function was dominated by uncontrolled alcohol consumption, wild dancing, and illicit sexual advances. Pole dancing performed by nude divas is what seemed to be the climax of the fun. Both young and old revelers mingled with very little restrictions status of their marriages notwithstanding. Here promiscuity and immorality was a norm rather than an exception, everybody seemed to go about his or her business with little or no care about the world’s opinion.
During the event disparities and privileges manifested themselves right from the point of entrance, at the check-in ladies were accorded some more attention than any other group, revelers who frequented the club more regularly also enjoyed some privilege in obtaining the much sought after ticket. In addition, the class of car that one drove in seemed to influence the manner, in which a client was treated. In my opinion, this was due to the projected spending power which translated to more sales of beer and therefore greater profits to the club. Further analysis showed that ladies were more favored than men either due to their charming feminine offences or due to their natural persuasiveness. Inside the club, the same privileges leaned towards ladies, where they were offered the front row seats, but their male colleagues gaining an upper hand, when it came to service offered by female barmaids. This was often due to general attraction of these maids (Eitzen, Maxine, & Kelly, 2012) to their male colleagues or the female seeking their attention in order to attract tips in form of dollars because men are deemed to be more generous. Generally, the club was a white dominated arena with very few black people coming in as revelers, while on the other hand there was a considerable number of black female strip dancers, which suggested some form of sexual exploitation.
Clearly the whole scenario demonstrates a morally decayed society where people are guided by their selfish interests. They developed a social theory to describe this type of human behavior that is named as conflict theory. This theory describes a society as less cohesive and more of a stage for struggles for power and conflict and where unity is highly disregarded as a means of furthering the collective wellbeing of the social system. In this sense people achieve their interests at the expense of others. In this event people were treated differently according to the benefits that were associated with them, gender discrimination was rife, as people sought for sexual favors from members of the opposite sex, the organizers were preoccupied with the interest of making as much money as possible without caring about the sexual harassments that resulted from the event, young men and women were exposed to sexual immorality at a tender age.
The family is an important unit, in which the behavior of an individual is shaped and developed. The moral standards of an average human being are highly determined by the environment and the surroundings in which a person grows. Children growing up in a family constitution of violent parents tend to grow to be violent adults, while in the same sense children brought up by single parents may also disregard the importance of the absentee parent in their adulthood. Human beings are naturally wired to copy things from their seniors as they grow up, and therefore the importance of good parenting cannot be ignored. According to Eitzen, Maxine, & Kelly (2012), social problems were linked to bad people, which is the theory of social behaviors that was termed as medical model. This theory was intended to understand the society, where bad people “are seen as abnormal due to mental conditions or incomplete socialization”. This theory assumes that there is a “universal criteria for normality” (Eitzen, Maxine, & Kelly, 2012) .
The role of education and the media in development of individuals is also huge. The media is specifically charged with imparting people with information about various aspects of life, which plays a very big role in determining the way, by which the society behaves at large or even the way that that an individual will react to a particular situation. Negative sentiments played in the media over time will be replicated in the behaviors of a particular society. Education, whether formal or informal, will also determine the morality of an individual and the overall behavior of a particular society. This effect of education and media is of particular interest, because the media is owned and controlled by people who have vested interests in matters of important issues. Therefore, controlling the public opinion on such matters becomes important. This is done through manipulation of the powerful mass media, by either overlooking some conditions, attention of the public may be diverted away from the source of the social problems, and thus the society will remain further away from the reality due to the lack of knowledge. Social immorality may also be enhanced by the media by showing or displaying of pornographic material to people of tender age, movies that glorify war heroes or material worship. It is, therefore, important that positive information be fed to the society by the media.
According to Eitzen, Maxine, & Kelly (2012), deviance occurs when a society sets some goals and the means to achieve them; the society recognizes the goals but lacks the sufficient means to achieve those. This is explained in one of his theories known as the Merton social strain theory, which describes a situation when the people start employing unethical means to achieve these laid goals. This was the case in Tampa night club event, where people engaged in all sort of behavior to generate some income, prostitution was rife, whereas alcohol taking and drug abuse rampant. This is a total demonstration of deviance in the society, whereby the people go against the norm to achieve selfish interest. Crime was also a factor in the event where some individuals traded illegal substances like crack and brown sugar. Sexual harassment was also observed in the event in the form of pole dancers, who for some fees would offer services like lap dancing and massage services that would often lead to sexual encounters. The labeling theory developed by Eitzen, Maxine, & Kelly (2012) explains the role of the society in determining the social problems. In this theory, social reactions are viewed as the key in determining what a social problem is and who is deviant in the society,
The young people have been isolated and left as a vulnerable group due to the lack of guidance and counseling by the more senior persons in the society, who should serve to educate and guide them in matters of moral concern. The event did not aid building the society in any meaningful manner. Apart from the issue of socialization, the rest of the event was morally demeaning, the young people in the event were exploited; the event organizers did not consider protecting the youth from sexual harassment and drug abuse. This event served to foster some ill placed morals in the society, solidarity was observed in the event only at times when people want to satisfy their personal interests.
As a conclusion, it is only justified to claim that the event did not build the community in any way. The activities that were practiced there did not emphasize on character building or the establishment of a morally upright society. The profit making nature of business ventures is tearing down the moral orientation of society we live in. There should be a deliberate attempt by the society to try and restore the way the society used to operate by. The world should not be left at the hands of inconsiderate business owners.
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