I’m Not One for Gossip, But…

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Gossip is ugly and pernicious, and I never do it (what’s more I never lie).

Believe it or not, there are people in our community who say unpleasant things about others. Generally, the stuff I have witnessed has been pretty low-key; jokes and innuendo are the popular currency.

You’ll understand, I’m sure, that I have no time for this.  Cynical back-biting, gossip and put-downs are for others, not me. I do listen though, but even then, I’m just a passive observer. So that lets me off the hook, doesn’t it?

I don’t want to give the impression that the people where I live are nasty, they’re not. And the behaviour I’m talking about is directed at one or two others who have put themselves at risk of judgement by the things they have done.

If you cheat someone or act in a way that goes against the perceived values of the community, what do you expect? So they deserve it (so people say).

I’m not one for gossip, but…

Something strange happened this week. Somebody published a highly supportive and praiseworthy piece about a local figure who is more usually the target of criticism. Never to her face, you understand, but ‘everyone knows’ what she is like.

The article was beautifully written, sincere and heartfelt. It was the sort of writing that brings a warm glow. It was a pleasure to read.

Two things happened. Some immediately judged the writer by hastily revising their former good opinion of him, and downgrading him to a lower order of being. He’s now seen to be unreliable…. shown his true colours… etc.

The other thing that happened is that some of us revised our opinion of the subject of the article. The person who is generally scapegoated has a supporter! As I read and re-read the article, I have found that I agree with it, and I’m becoming a supporter too.

What do you think? Please share a comment.