We have a local saying that’s roughly translated as: The earth has ears, the news have wings.
When you mix envy, personal dissatisfaction, family embarrassment, lack of nothing worthwhile to do and just plain wickedness, you will possess the notorious qualities to start and spread gossip.
Contrary to popular belief that some women are the worst gossipers, many men will beat females to the title. And they have the ability to repel blame even if found guilty, using the power to coerce witnesses and stonewall any further inquiries why they did it.
Imagine a man, inebriated to the point he could not hold on to his tongue, claimed that he slept with another man’s wife. His drinking buddies, not all drunk as he was, could either believe the slur or not. If one of them decided to pick up the ‘news’ and confessed to his wife, there’s enough chance the leak would travel quick through the channels, ensuring full damage to the victims of such irresponsible lie.
In a society that has a malnourished view of what’s right and wrong, any information could be construed as true even if proven false in the end. Damage has already been done, seeding a germ of a doubt in the minds of people who patronized such juicy tidbits against others they probably envied, too
Even a successful demand for a recantation could not erase the damaging impression the lie caused. For the aggrieved, a strained relationship becomes an ordeal, often tearing a family apart, sowing distrust and suspicion, when in the first place there was none.
Meanwhile, the gossiper remained immune to the consequences of his deceit. Even if called a liar for life, he could not bring back time to purify the sullied reputation of his innocent victims.