Frank Zappa was a legendary rock artist who had some bizarre, inspirational and unique things to say. He was an extraordinary guitar player and musician. I think what I like the best about him though was the fact that he was a self-taught composer. He was also a huge free speech advocate, which we here at Epicdelusion are quite passionate about.
It struck me as odd to discover that so many people online were asking what this quote meant. Asking questions is good and I applaud your quest for knowledge, I just found it strange, I suppose, because the quote speaks so clearly to me.
So what does it mean? Deviation from the norm is quite simple. It's the act of thinking, saying, writing, believing or behaving differently than societal norms and what is expected from you.
Now, today it's fairly common to see pink haired "weirdos" with tattoos. The reason it's so common these days is because it's more accepted in our society. This degree of acceptance is brought to you by the pioneers; the true renegades of our society.
There was a time when being a punk rocker or a misfit of society was just unacceptable. You were really risking your life when you dyed your hair pink and walked around with piercings through your face.
If it wasn't for people breaking the barriers back in the day, then it wouldn't be so accepted today. It's kind of like 50's rock and roll music. This is the music your parents or your grandparents listened to most likely (depending on your age). You may hear Elvis or Jerry Lee Lewis and think they're lame, but at one time they were the deviants of society.
50's rock and roll was considered, by the square community, the new devil's plague on the youth of America, just like Jazz and Swing music in the years prior.
Deviating from the norm isn't just about looking like a punk rocker or listening to music that society hates. It's also about breaking social and political barriers. It's speaking out against tyranny and majority rule whenever necessary. And it doesn't end there...
Progress is not possible unless you deviate from the norm. This is true in all aspects of life.
It's the scientist who dares to challenge the authority of his field and go against accepted theories. It's Galileo when he proclaimed that the earth revolved around the sun. It's Giordano Bruno who was excommunicated, imprisoned and sentenced to death by the Catholic church for presenting the idea that other worlds other than earth existed. It's Daniel Hale who performed the first open heart surgery while facing a world of opposition (one of the greatest advancements in medical history).
It's those who stood up against the world and fought for what they believed in. These great people deviated from the norm and as a result, advancements were made and we became more enlightened as a species.
So in a nut shell, this quote basically means to be a rebel and stand up for what you believe in. Even though it may be something that is shunned today, it could be something that is quite valuable to tomorrow's progress.
Thanks for reading! If you're all about this Zappa Quote, you should pick up this screen printed tee!
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