Chicago, IL - We've all heard the phrase, "Ugly American". Now it appears that science may lend some credence to the stereotype. Researchers at the University of Chicago Center for Bioaesthetics have announced results of a study indicating that Americans have indeed become less attractive in recent years.
Photographic evidence from thousands of subjects taken over a period of several decades was analyzed using sophisticated computer modeling. Allowances were made for the increase in weight of the average American. "Everybody knows that obesity is epidemic in this country", says Dr. Richard Wartz, the leader of the study, "but that isn't what we're talking about here. Lots of additional body fat certainly doesn't add to physical beauty, but we had already factored the extra pounds into our analysis. Our software can slim down the subjects in these images, and they are still butt ugly."
How to account for this trend? "We have several theories", says Wartz. "It's well known that most men are intimidated by extremely beautiful women. It may be that being relatively homely is an advantage for the female because it makes her more approachable. Really hot people may find it more difficult to reproduce, in which case we may be seeing the cumulative effect of that".
In any case, don't expect things to improve anytime soon, says the researcher. "Have you been to a ball game or ridden the subway recently?", Wartz asks. "It's not pretty out there."