Well, is being tough the ultimate goal in life? Is being seen to be weak the ultimate in failure as a human being?
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Peoples first response when encountering someone they haven't met on the street is to be stand-offish and attempt to be slightly tough. People tend to walk around with a scowl on their face. Normal people get tattoo's to be a bit bad and tough. There is a lot of overt toughness around these days.
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People who don't have the stuff genetically seem to try to make up for their lack of physical toughness by achieving financial wealth, followed by power, followed by toughness.
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Then there are those who get tough looking cars and therefore, by default, also strive to appear tough. Toughness is very much image based.
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And what about kids these days... Let's not even go there. They learn it from the tough adults all around them anyway.
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Do all people secretly want to appear to be at least a little tough to their fellow human beings? Even a little? Be honest.
And is it such a bad thing? Is it an in-built survival mechanism from years past where our apparent toughness or lack there-of could have meant life or death? Is it something deep down in our genes that has stayed with us through our evolution into modern humankind?
Is that why a lot of people take up the martial arts and self protection? Martial artists feel a little tough inside when others around them find out they know how to handle themselves. And why do people go to the gym? To look good? Really? Or is it to look a bit tough?
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Who knows. But there sure is a lot of overt toughness out there in the world these days.