Maybe it is because I live in a small town; I don't know. But everyday people think nothing of talking bad about someone, behind their backs or to their face, of hurtful gossip, of throwing someone in the mud to make themselves look better. And these people don't seem to be thinking this tactic through. Besides being unladylike, it is just a bad strategy. Firstly, not only are you transmitting that you have nothing to offer unless the other person is brought down to your level, but don't think for a second that nobody saw you push that person down. That no-one noticed when you slapped her into the mud. Because people notice. They may not say anything to you, but they notice.
Secondarily, I have had "friends" before who spent all their time talking bad about their other "friends." Which means, by process of common sense and an understanding of human nature, that they were talking about me when I wasn't there. If you stick around when people start to talk, be prepared for the fallout. Stick up for the underdog, and people will notice. Not only will they stop gossiping around you, but you will give them one less thing to talk about when you turn your back.
So don't be an everyday person. Be spectacular. Have the courage to stand above everyone else, because you don't want their dirt smothering your shine.