Normal is a lie


Saijleen Chawla

These students are hanging out together during lunch as they always do. This is normal for them, but may not be another student’s definition of normal.

Saijleen Chawla, Staff Writer

Usual. Average. Typical.  When one searches for the word “normal” on the Internet, these are the words usually found to describe it. The definition of normal hasn’t changed much in the eyes of the English language, but the validity of the word and its implications are starting to be questioned. Normal is not what it used to be.

[Normal] is a social and legal obstruction because we are all eccentric.

— psychology teacher Sean Hickey

“[Normal] is a social and legal obstruction because we are all eccentric,” psychology teacher Sean Hickey said. Unfortunately, it is almost considered degrading to exhibit actions that are not common.

Labeling something as abnormal only encourages the notion that there is a definition of normal.

It is easier to notice a bright color in the midst of dull colors, but insulting something for being different is what causes abnormal to wear an unfavorable definition.

The people who are the most vulnerable are the ones who don’t conform. Bullies target these people because they are proud nonconformists. Sadly, their differences are pointed out in a way meant to humiliate, so the person stands out more than he or she could have.

Common insults such as “weird,” “strange,” “crazy,” and  “queer” can be heard throughout the school hallways. These words, though they are meant to be harmless, isolate the person by giving the word “different” a negative connotation and associating it to the word “abnormal.”

If being different or not following what is defined as normal causes repulsion, it means that the great thinkers of this world, such as Galileo Galilei and Leonardo Da Vinci, did something unspeakable. With an attitude like that, scientific and mathematical breakthroughs would have never been accepted, and Albert Einstein would be a madman, not a genius.

Unfortunately, qualities or attributes that aren’t common are usually thought of as abnormal, but there are many alternative descriptions that can be used instead. Some examples of such adjectives are unique, special, incomparable or something else that emphasizes that person’s individuality.

Still, normal is given an interpretation everyone is suggested to follow.   “Everyone has their own normal,” sophomore Hanna Mekonnen said. If everyone has their own normal, there cannot be a single way to define normal.

Though it is daunting to walk away from the bandwagon that is the word “normal,” there is actually no such thing as normal. Describing something as normal is impractical and overall idealistic. “Normal is a state of being that cannot be reached,” senior Carmen Vegas said.