MIAMI — A currently trending study from Miami‘s Barry University finds baldness—a state that afflicts a majority of aging men to at least some degree—may not be the bad thing it’s so often cracked up to be.
Frank Muscarella, the doctor who helmed the study, speculated that “male pattern baldness evolved as an appeasement signal and signaled benign, non-threatening dominance.”
He may be onto something. It stands to reason that, for baldness to remain so prevalent, there is likely some evolutionary advantage causing it to persist.
And leave it to the scientists in image-conscious Florida to figure it out!
Researchers believe that baldness does indeed signal dominance, yet—somewhat paradoxically—it is dominance coupled with low levels of aggression.
(One can only assume that they overlooked recent action blockbusters starring Bruce Willis, Vin Diesel and Southwest Ranches’ Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson when coming to the second part of that conclusion.)
Surveys performed in connection with the study revealed that the follically-challenged were also viewed more favorably than the well-tressed when it came to honesty, education and intelligence, though they didn’t stack up quite as well with measures of attractiveness.
Still, the “baldness” gene is clearly getting passed along somehow, so honesty and intelligence must be good for something in the dating world.
Also, some solace for those forlorn unfortunates who lose their hair early: Related studies show a marked decrease in the risk of prostate cancer for men with early onset baldness.
So there you have it! Male pattern baldness, though maligned by many, actually signals many positive traits, such as intelligence, social leadership and good health, and bald men achieve it all while still being viewed as non-threatening.
All that said, it’s probably best not to pick any fights with that egghead milquetoast The Rock anytime soon.