Reading 6: Whose Side Are We On? - Howard S. Becker
I agree with the author's statement that sociologists must decide which side they are on when researching any problem or issue. News journalists should be neutral and unemotional because they are reporting facts and events, but sociologists need to take a side and use the emotion of the people they are studying in order to help the reader understand what the sociologist is attempting to portray.
The author used excellent examples to help the reader understand his point of view. The examples of superordinates (teachers or police) vs subordinates (students or addicts) helped me understand how sociologists' writings can be viewed as biased when sociologists take the side of the subordinate. Even though not many people think that addicts should make rules for policemen, their view should be heard because they could be telling the truth. It is up to the reader to make their own decision on what is true and not true to them.
Sociology is inevitably a moral discipline because sociology is the study of human behavior and humans have morals. Some humans believe they are more moral or superordinate than others. Morals or values are the first things we teach our children. Therefore, how could the study of human behavior not be a moral discipline? Morals are a large part of who a person is and you could not study humans without considering their morals.