Is a norm, by any other name, still a norm?
With the advent of The #MeToo Moment, we have heard that cultural norms have shifted; that respect for physical space has been revised. In math, the norm or normal is the most frequent response. So let me present a hypothetical. What if, when you survey responses, you have rigged the response or ignored responses that you didn’t want to hear? So, the hypothetical story goes something like this.
Long, long ago, in a kingdom far away – let’s call it the Kingdom of Duh, the men who would maintain power and wealth came up with a scheme. They decided they would say that 2+2 equals 3. The idea was that if their unknowing customers would buy two items they would get two more for free for a total of 3. They would get rich! Furthermore, anyone who spoke up and said that, wait, 2+2=4, would be severely punished.
After millennia there were very few who would say that 2+2=4, and, in fact, most of the people being cheated by this idea had come to believe that 2+2=3. They would say, “We have taken a sample and the most frequent response is that 2+2=3, so that is the norm. Occasionally, there were large numbers who would protest but the response was always, “the norm is that 2+2=3.” so, those being cheated would suppress their bad feelings and back down. Even some of those doing the cheating came to believe that what they were doing was correct.
Then came a new movement whereby people could safely report that it was their belief that 2+2 = 4, and they were tired of having to think that being cheated and feeling bad about it was the “norm.” Suddenly, many of those had to change their ways or suffer the consequences. They would say that they understood there was a norm and they would change. No, there wasn’t a new norm, just a new way of obtaining an unbiased sample of the population.
As a healer, I can tell you that physically or energetically invading or abusing someone’s space has NEVER been OK. Whether the person is consciously aware of it or not, it has NEVER felt good. What is happening today is not a “new norm.” Rather, it is now an unbiased determination of the norm. And those who were also deluded into thinking that their “intentions” were harmless need to recognize that it’s not the harmfulness or acceptance of their behavior that has changed. It’s that a false norm is being replaced with a valid norm.