THE WIND THAT SHAKES THE CORN: Memoirs of a Scots Irish Woman

The 2018 Independent Press Award Winner in Religion Fiction

Beginning in eighteenth century Ireland and then set against the background of a burgeoning America, The Wind That Shakes the Corn tells the story of the feistiness of Scots Irish immigrants, and the heart-held faith and courage that led their struggle toward individualism in America. Nell Dugan’s hatred, but also her love and determination, spotlights the Irish, both Protestant and Catholic, who bring to Revolutionary America age-old grudges against longtime English rule.

On Nell’s wedding night in Ireland, English soldiers abduct her from the arms of her Scottish Lord and throw her on a ship, slave-fodder for a West Indies sugar plantation. But Nell uses her beauty and cunning to seduce the plantation owner’s son who sneaks her away to pre-revolutionary Philadelphia where she agrees to marry him, keeping secret her marriage to the Scottish lord she truly loves, and swearing to pay back the English not only for her own kidnapping but also for her mother’s hanging two decades earlier.

A story of love, hate, revenge, and the ever-hovering choice to forgive.


Set in 1955, a young boy comes to terms with the consequences World War II has had on his family. His beloved, shell-shocked, father is a decorated hero who stages continual games of war to train his son; his bigoted, alcoholic mother blames the misfortune in her marriage on the soldier whose life her husband saved; and his manipulative grandfather stirs up trouble between mother and son, until the boy must fight a personal war just to survive. When the boy’s father is suspiciously shot and killed, his grandfather accuses his daughter-in-law, and a bitter estrangement between the boy and his mother is set in motion, tempered only by the family gardener and a neighbor girl with family problems of her own.

A story of hope and love. How we find it and thrive in even the darkest circumstances.

BRIDGE-MAN BURNING: The Sins of a Southern Man

Sequel to A Hunger in the Heart

As a boy Coleman Putttman Bridgeman III was hurt by the love he hungered for. Now as a young man, leaving his hometown behind, he carries with him the family blood that runs through his veins and voices of the past that run through his head. In marriage and business, Coleman faces love’s most powerful battles where he must confront the weakest and deepest, parts of himself. Honesty versus dishonesty, faithfulness versus betrayal, and courage versus cowardice, are all in play while the question remains: Will Coleman Puttman Bridgeman III win his war, or will he lose love forever?


A New Orleans hurricane takes the life of artist Audrey Bliss’s husband, swallows any trace of their four year-old son, and dramatically changes Audrey when she suffers a head wound. She’s always been perceptive, but now she sees and hears the voices of missing people calling to be found. Soon, asked by local law enforcement to solve crimes in The Big Easy, she finds many missing people, including a girl from Birmingham, Alabama found murdered in New Orleans. Yet, she never finds her own son, and accepts he died in the hurricane. After inheriting a tiny island in the Tennessee River near Red Clay Springs, Alabama, Audrey attempts to discard her life as a seer and takes up residence in the old house to concentrate on her art. But when an unidentified boy is found dead on a pyre, her gift of seeing will not let go.

A love story …. but of a mother for her lost son, of a father for his daughter, and of a sheriff for two  young men he thinks of as his own.


In the past few years Kaye Park Hinckley has emerged as a major talent in what Paul Elie calls “the literature of belief.” Hinckley translates grace in a world on edge, sees a double beginning and ending in everything, literally everything, including the unspeakably awful. Like her novel A Hunger in the Heart, the stories in Birds of a Feather—several of which have won substantive awards—take us to the heart of the matter.

“The short stories in Birds of a Feather are richly imagined tales full of finely drawn characters who demonstrate how people estranged from faith can bumble through life so distracted by worldly horrors and delights, so full of themselves, that they don’t even notice faint nudges of grace that stir in their souls or recognize subtle emanations of the holy that abound in the world around them.”–The Catholic World Report


The story of Paul Dunaway’s struggle to re-shape his affluent but joyless life, while opposing forces in the out-of-control, politically correct America he helped to create, threaten to take him down. A tale of Tolerance taken to the extreme, as patriotism and religion are deplored by those in command.

“Mary’s Mountain” follows the conversion of everyman through the character of Paul Dunaway, who is born into the Faith but loses it shamelessly through the enticements of the world: money, lust, power. Then he eventually finds his way back to God through Mary’s Mountain, his former home.


How does corruption SMELL? Rotten to the core.

Have you ever smelled something rotting in your own house? Don’t you search all over to find out what it is so that you can get rid of it? Perhaps you have discovered a rotting piece of fruit among others in a bowl: Surely you will discard that piece because, left on its own, it will contaminate all the other fruit and SMELL up your entire house.

Yesterday’s televised testimony of Peter Strzok reaked of rottenness! Strzok is a United States Federal Bureau of Investigation agent, and the Chief of the Counterespionage Section leading the FBI’s investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a personal email server. An agent who admits to ‘despising’ the elected president of the United States.

As an FBI agent, Strzok has sworn this oath:
I, Peter Strzok, do solemnly swear that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.

In fact, it was apparent to me that Strzok and other top people in the FBI are betraying their oath to the Constitution by covertly threatening the elected president of the United States.

The investigation is not over. Lisa Page, the married FBI lawyer who exchanged 10,000 extremely biased texts with her anti-Trump agent lover, Strzok, should testify today.

Here are a few things among many I learned from watching Strzok’s Thursday testimony:

…Strzok, who was a key player in Mueller’s Russia probe, helped clear Hillary Clinton. As a part of former FBI Director James Comey’s Hillary Clinton email probe, Strzok changed the wording in Comey’s assessment from ‘grossly negligent to ‘extremely careless,’ which kept her from prosecution.

…Strzok was also involved in questioning Michael Flynn before he was prosecuted for lying to the Bureau.

…Strzok has been dismissed from Robert Mueller’s Russia probe and relocated within the FBI over the summer. Page, a lawyer, was also involved in Mueller’s investigation but left the probe before the messages were discovered.

The SMELL of Corruption in the FBI is more than rotten. It is just plain sad.

The FBI comes under our Department of Justice. Thomas Jefferson wrote, The most sacred of the duties of government is to do equal and impartial justice to all its citizens.

My questions are: Is this sacred duty still the guiding principle for the women and men of the U.S. Department of Justice? Can we trust them? Or are they presently betraying the American people?

First, we need to get it through our heads that hatred degrades us as human beings, that hatred is not strength but cowardice, that its cause is the fear of not having things the way we want them?

I will permit no man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.
― Booker T. Washington

Hatred is the coward’s revenge for being intimidated.
― George Bernard Shaw

In time we hate that which we often fear.
― William Shakespeare

Why can’t we get it through our heads that we ought to treat others with dignity?

Why can’t we get it through our heads who we really are?

Each one of us is a child of God, who created us for a purpose, and we are meant to be Christ-like. We are not here to manipulate others, or puff ourselves up, or to grab all we can before someone else does.

We are here for such a short time, but in that time we can make a real difference by how we live our lives. That difference can be a benefit or a hindrance to our fellow human beings. Why would we choose to be a hindrance? Yet many of us do.

When we interact with another person, and actually see him or her as they are–made in the image and likeness of God, the same God who created us–how can we cheat them? How can we manipulate them? How can we physically abuse them, or even kill them? For heaven sake–and I mean that literally–our purpose is to love them!

Secondly, loving is never easy. Loving someone presents many hurdles. One of the biggest is that even if we love a person, we don’t always love what they do. This is going to be true with parents and children, with spouses, with friends and co-workers, and with political opponents. There will be times when we know they’re going in a wrong direction. There will be times when we recognize that they are actually sinning, or proposing sin–a word that our society often choses to overlook. Are we to simply ignore this?

It would be foolish for us to ignore or tolerate sin, especially in someone we truly love and care for, because doing so puts them in danger. Sincere loving requires action, and that action is not to bury our heads in the sand. Would we allow our toddler to continue peddling down a busy highway on a tricycle, or would we run out to snatch them back before they are literally killed? Would we watch our ten year old put a loaded gun in his or her pocket, and then smile as they go out of the door? Would we allow our teenager to pump himself or herself full of drugs just because he or she thinks it’s fun? Would we allow our spouse to jump into bed with a co-worker without a word from us?

Confronting sin in those we love (and in ourselves) is an action that requires courage, a compassionate courage that at the very least cautions  our loved ones. If we do not care enough to attempt to unravel risky behavior in those we love, then we do not truthfully love them at all.

We must have the courage. We cannot be afraid to open our mouths. We are called to love. We are created to love. If we are children of God ourselves–and we are–then we must see that others are our brothers and sisters, and reach out to them in loving ways, without pomposity, self-righteousness, or manipulation. We must see Christ in others, and in turn we act as Christ would act.

While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.–Matthew 9: 9-13

Each of us is a sinner. Can’t we try not to be?

Masking Motives???

Posted: July 2, 2018 in World On The Edge

No one disagrees that there are both good and evil in the world.

But if there are both good and evil in the world, where does it come from? Does it come from physically earth-bound human beings? Or does it emanate from entities far beyond us in a never-ending battle for our very souls?  Yes, a human being is not only a physical being, but a spiritual being as well.

We human beings are at once loveable, and yet, at the same time, capable of being despicable. We have helped our fellowman, and yet, by  wars, crimes, false faces, and self-serving motives, we have intentionally hurt and even destroyed our fellowman. All historical writings show this, especially the Bible which shows it in the context of adherence or non-adherence to absolute truth, found in a higher power called God.

So today, do we as individuals adhere to a higher power, or only our own power? Have human beings forgotten there is indeed a higher power who has set within us not only the intangibility of our intellect (Memory, Imagination, and Free Will, the ability to make right or wrong decisions) but also decisive standards for goodness?

Throughout history many human beings have taken on the role of God, seeing themselves as beings in charge of all standards, standards they–not God–have created. And that is because adherence to a higher power is not always comfortable or convenient. In fact, more often than not, it is a struggle we don’t want to endure, and yet, in that difficult struggle is the path to our eternal happiness.

In today’s world, we have so much more materially than those who have gone before us–but there is much confusion about who a human being is, and what his purpose is meant to be. Some people, especially those grasping for political office, appear to see themselves as set upon the earth distinctly for their own purposes, using others to get there. They want to change our way of thinking. They want to control us, and our vote. The political and moral climate of our present America has spawned many people like this who want to change the moral and political mores of our country, and they are “not nice” in their attempt to do it.  Much of their playbook is from Saul Alinsky’s, Rules for Radicals–straight from the 1960’s. Alinsky was a communist and community activist who wrote about how to successfully run a movement of social change. His goal for the Rules for Radicals was to create a guide for future community organizers to use in uniting low-income communities.

To mask their real motives, and to confuse Americans, the people following this playbook spout ‘nice-sounding’ but self-serving phrases such as “Love conquers Hate, etc. without applying the phrase to themselves. But what they are really after are hateful things, such as abortion on demand, gay rights and all it entails, the dissipation of traditional marriage, the “give-away” of America through illegal immigration, and even the outrageous idea that a person can choose his or her sex. The confusion is being assisted by an undisciplined media, including most of Hollywood and some of the music industry, and even misguided theologians who we might expect to know better, yet they don’t appear to.

We should not be lead astray.

Daily, everyone chooses between good and evil. It is our human nature. A mature person recognizes the signs of evil within himself, and attempts to re-attach to the good by seeking forgiveness and moving forward. Catholics call it the sacrament of Reconciliation or Confession. But when someone cannot/will not admit wrong-doing out of selfishness, a big problem exists for him or her. Instead of admitting they are doing wrong, and trying to fix it, they go overboard to make their wrong SEEM right.  Exactly what is happening in our present America through the playbook of the left.

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.—Isaiah 5:20

It is important to realize that trickery is being used today by some people with intentionally selfish motives. It is important to remember that wolves have been known to wear sheep’s clothing. Let’s think for ourselves, not jump on a very wrong bandwagon that will not only take us down individually, but our country as well. We must use our common sense.

Most of all, we should realize that ‘LOVE” is not a word to throw around when it’s convenient to our own end result, but it is a word to live up to. Love is a an action that comes from our spirituality, not our physicality. Love is the all-encompassing standard created within us by God.

Don’t be fooled into becoming a simple sheep following the wolves in false sheep clothing. We are not part of a mind-less herd, and not just  faces in the crowd to be used for convenience, or votes. We are divinely created originals, with a spiritual purpose set into us by God.

Image  —  Posted: June 27, 2018 in World On The Edge


Mary’s Mountain, my novelette, is FREE on Kindle June 27 thru July 1. It’s a short read, so I hope you’ll take me up on my offer, and I would very much appreciate a review on Amazon or Barnes & Noble!

Mary’s Mountain is a story about Tolerance taken to the extreme. It is Paul Dunaway’s struggle to re-shape his affluent but joyless life, while the opposing forces in the out-of-control, politically correct America he helped to create, now threaten to take him down.

A description of the infamous Institute of Tolerance found in the novelette: Today, inside its progenies, rigid rooms are covered in fiddle-faddle flowers and sentimental hearts beating warm and fuzzy pizazz into nearly every state of the union. Outside each building, a neon sign blinks: Tolerance Today, Tolerance Tomorrow, Tolerance Forever! The signs have fingers, virtual reality, to motion the people inside. The signs move. The lights move. And the people inside are moved, to tolerate anything.

Mary’s Mountain is somewhat futuristic, but not entirely. Already our history is being revised, and we accept it. Already Truth is being debunked, and we swallow it–especially if what is replacing Truth agrees with our personal opinions, or tickles our indulgences. This is dangerous. Already our religious faith is being challenged. Already our right to hear the truth on television and social media is being meddled with.  Already, our country’s enemies are at our throat, and yes, crossing our border. And some of them actually mean us great harm.

Why don’t we fight back against any of this? Many of us don’t want to be labeled  intolerant. Except intolerance has nothing to do with keeping our country safe. Keeping our country safe is called plain Common Sense.

Many of us have become tolerant cowards, we have become tolerant of coarseness, we have become tolerant of laziness, we have become so tolerant that whenever we are fed lies by social media, the entertainment industry, and the fake news, we gobble it all up like a favorite dessert.

We are supposed to be flesh and blood human beings, on the lookout for ourselves and others; but instead we’re becoming sponges, soggy with wrong information– when what we need to be are heroes.

We once considered wrong as an action against the commandment of God. Now many of those wrongs have been propagandized to seem right. And worse, we’d better put up with it, or else be called bigots, or racists, or religious zealots. In other words, we are being asked to tolerate the intolerable.

What is honest tolerance anyway? And what is intolerance?

Bishop Fulton J. Sheen said: “The important point here is this: Tolerance applies only to persons, but never to truth. Intolerance applies only to truth, but never to persons. Tolerance applies to the erring; intolerance to the error…America is suffering not so much from intolerance, which is bigotry, as it is from tolerance, which is indifference to truth and error, and a philosophical nonchalance that has been interpreted as broad-mindedness.”

G.K Chesterton said: “Tolerance is the virtue of the man without convictions.”

The question in Mary’s Mountain, is whether Paul Dunaway will continue to indulge in his so-called broad-mindedness, or return to his honest convictions, enough to become a white-knight for America.

Here is one review of the novelette by a wonderful author, Jeannie Ewing:

Kaye Hinckley’s novella “Mary’s Mountain” was so captivating that I read it in one sitting without putting the book down once. It has apocalyptic flavors, much like the “1982” or “Brave New World” or “Animal Farm” type stories from decades prior. But the novelty of Hinckley’s tale is refreshing, because she portrays a society that embraces liberalism in such a way that traditionalists are ostracized and even banned. She foretells what our nation could look like politically, socially, and morally in a frighteningly and chillingly realistic portrayal of how technology plays into the degradation of an entire generation.

But the hope lies in Mary’s Mountain, Mary of course being the Mother of God. Mary’s presence is visible and constant on this mountain, which offers light to believers who have not forsaken their faith, despite persecution and threat of punishment. Some are visionaries, while others simply stay close to the mountain, pay her homage or retreat there as pilgrims in order to find refreshment and spiritual rejuvenation from their daily plight.

“Mary’s Mountain” follows the conversion of everyman through the character of Paul Dunaway, who is born into the Faith but loses it shamelessly through the enticements of the world: money, lust, power. Then he eventually finds his way back to God through Mary’s Mountain, his former home.

Hinckley is a fantastic writer who uses vivid imagery through the written word for character and plot development. I was duly impressed with the power of this story in such a short novella. Brilliantly done!

I hope you’ll read Mary’s Mountain while it’s FREE this week, and let me know what you think.


How To Stay Married…

Posted: June 26, 2018 in World On The Edge


June has been thought of as the month of marriages. So before this month passes,  I’d like to pay tribute to marriages that last. Here are some excellent thoughts by some admirable people about marriages that last, not because of the bubbly idea of love but because of solid commitment–that promise we make to each other.

“No long-term marriage is made easily, and there have been times when I’ve been so angry or so hurt that I thought my love would never recover. And then, in the midst of near despair, something has happened beneath the surface. A bright little flashing fish of hope has flicked silver fins and the water is bright and suddenly I am returned to a state of love again — till next time. I’ve learned that there will always be a next time, and that I will submerge in darkness and misery, but that I won’t stay submerged. And each time something has been learned under the waters; something has been gained; and a new kind of love has grown. The best I can ask for is that this love, which has been built on countless failures, will continue to grow. I can say no more than that this is mystery, and gift, and that somehow or other, through grace, our failures can be redeemed and blessed.” ― Madeleine L’Engle

“A good marriage doesn’t just happen; it takes work—but it’s worth it. I could say much about building a strong marriage—but I’ve sometimes summarized them in four simple points that might be easy to remember. Let me repeat them; each begins with the letter “C”. First, Cherish. God gave you to each other; you are God’s gift to your spouse. Take time to express your love, both by your words and by little acts of thoughtfulness—a surprise gift, a special time away, a favorite dinner. Cherish your wife, and let her know she is important to you. Second, Communicate. Let each other know what’s going on in your life at home or at work. Don’t clam up; don’t nag or only express yourself when you’re upset. The Bible says, “A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver” (Proverbs 25:11).Third, Compromise. The greatest enemy of love is our selfishness, but in marriage you can’t always have your own way, so learn to compromise with grace. The Bible says, “Love does not demand its own way” (1 Corinthians 13:5, The Living Bible). Finally, Christ. Make Christ the center of your lives and your marriage every day, by committing yourself to Him and His will. He is the solid foundation we need—in our lives, and in our marriages.” — Billy Graham

“I didn’t marry you because you were perfect. I didn’t even marry you because I loved you. I married you because you gave me a promise. That promise made up for your faults. And the promise I gave you made up for mine. Two imperfect people got married and it was the promise that made the marriage. And when our children were growing up, it wasn’t a house that protected them; and it wasn’t our love that protected them – it was that promise.”— Thornton Wilder

A Wild World???

Posted: June 20, 2018 in World On The Edge

It takes a lot of courage to keep our faith in a world such as ours. In the recent past, we’ve seen leaders whose ethics we would like to have respected, but instead they became so disreputable that we now fear for our country.

So, we looked to a stronger leader, elected by a strong majority. A leader who is unafraid to uphold the Truths we ought to be living by, and that our nation was founded upon. And yet, day by day, we hear bigger and bigger lies from those who cannot abide his success. And we feel the pinch of that.

There is an attempt to fool us—and we’ve been too involved in ourselves to notice.

And as he taught them, he said, “Is it not written: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations’? But you have made it ‘a den of robbers.'” Mark 11:17

We have not turned over the tables in the temple. We have not warned the cheaters. We have not called for Truth loud enough to be heard. And it is my belief that if we do not raise our voices,  one day, we will regret it terribly.

Let’s wake up, before we can’t wake up at all. Let’s look into ourselves—-unselfishly look–to find even the smallest ways to assist our culture and our country, founded on principles of Faith which we haven’t seen in a long while, until now. Let’s bring them back.

Let’s bring back Honesty as opposed to lies.

Courage as opposed to timidity.

Freedom as opposed to unfounded restrictions.

Let’s eliminate the utilization of many people only to keep them victims, as opposed to lifting them to their rightful high place as good and dignified human beings, brothers and sisters, created by God.

Let’s secure respect for Life itself, from its beginning to its end.

Because if we don’t, where we end up will be worse than we can even imagine.

Day by day, our world has become wilder, and less virtuous.

Day by day, we are drowning, all the while hanging on to what we’re ‘told’ by some less-than-honest media. ‘Told’ what it is they need to survive. ‘Told’ not by our own heart and soul, but by those people who have only their imprudent interests in mind. ‘Told’ by those who would use us for their own purposes, until the beautiful core values of America become like pieces of chewed-up gum stuck to the dirtied soles of avaricious power-worshippers.

Oh yes. We left principle behind. We left Faith and values behind. It’s a wild world now. Does anyone doubt that we need to change it?

Thank God, we still have a choice to do just that. All it takes is a love for country, a love for those who will come after us, a fearless voice–AND GOOD COMMON SENSE.

The manuscript of my newest and unpublished novel, ABSENCE, has been submitted for the Penn/Bellwether Prize, an award begun by best-selling author, Barbara Kingsolver, “The Poisonwood Bible.” The $25,000 prize is awarded biennially to the author of a previously unpublished novel of high literary caliber that exemplifies the prize’s founding principles. The winner also receives a publishing contract with Algonquin Books.

The intention of The Penn/Bellwether prize is to support writers whose unpublished works support positive social change, and to “encourage writers, publishers, and readers to consider how fiction engages visions of social change and human justice.”

Will my work qualify? I hope so.

In my opinion, we cannot even consider human justice unless we first treasure the nature of a human being, that part which is immaterial and, I believe, comes from God. The natural law is a deep sense of the moral good, that all persons, irrespective of ethnic origin, gender, possessions, race, religion, etc., are to be treated equally and without prejudice. It follows then that we should never use people as a mere means to our own ends as happens in my novel, ABSENCE, which may be my favorite of all the novels I’ve written because it is based on my belief in the divine value of a human being.

Here is a brief synopsis:
Throw out any preconception you may have of a novel about a southern, peanut farmer. Absence is a mystery, in the deepest sense of the word, about marriage, about fathers and sons, husbands and wives, and brothers and sisters; all backed into corners and at odds with each other as they struggle with their human nature, and the nature of the world. The story centers around James Greene and one life-changing decision he makes. James’s family has farmed near the Chattahoochee River for three generations. He is a Vietnam veteran, seen by his wife, Katy, as strong as steel. His son, William, sees his father as a good man, almost a king; but James sees himself as a man who will stoop as low as he has to, to get what he wants. And he does just that—with destructive repercussions that alienate his entire family. And yet, even here, love can be found, along with its mystery.

The underpinnings of the novel are two:

1) The inevitable distance between human nature, which is possible to control, and the nature of the world which is impossible to control. i.e. moral evil vs. natural evil–and yet, humanity must deal with both.

2) The mystery of human nature’s innate ability to choose that which can be curative, or destructive.

I am a fiction writer who sees the world through the lens of my belief in God, and write what I believe is good fiction about that. OF COURSE, I ALWAYS INTEND A GOOD STORY, one that can be read and enjoyed with, or without, acknowledging its underpinnings

I would like my work to be taken seriously by today’s literary establishment, but I think that establishment is afraid of showing the depth of religious themes in fiction. And yet, according to the latest Gallup Poll, 89 % of Americans say they believe in God. Christianity is the world’s largest religion with over 2.4 billion followers, or 33% of the global population. Still, this is a largely ignored readership when it comes to realistic fiction with an underpinning of faith. One has only to consider works by Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Walker Percy, Flannery O’Connor, and countless others, to see its value. The literary establishment’s fear might be their feeling that dogma constrains the artist; but for me as a fiction writer, dogma is a guarantee of mystery, and as Walker Percy said, “a warrant to explore the mystery.” Take for example, Christianity’s benchmark, LOVE. Who can understand its joys and sufferings without faith?


Posted: June 12, 2018 in World On The Edge

Back-stabbing has become very popular in politics: Attack the competition without mercy. Ruin his or her reputation. Take them down at all cost, because my side is more important. The news is full of this sort of immature backyard brawling. So easy to do with social media because ‘anything goes’ and anyone can give an opinion, whether correct or not.

But it’s not just in politics that back-stabbers work. Have you ever attacked the character or reputation of a person who is not present in a conversation? On occasion, many of us have without realizing the enormous damage it can do.

And some people use back-stabbing very intentionally by throwing out information that is meant to put an un-present person in a bad light. This is done to damage that person, by playing the person he/she is talking to against the person not there and unable to defend himself.

These are people who–especially if they’ve been ignored–will play a so-called friend against another so-called friend in order to beef themselves up or to carve a place for themselves.

People who do this are dangerous. People who do this should be avoided, or at least seen as disingenuous and not truth-tellers. To listen to people such as this, to give them any slack or credence, can be very detrimental to anyone involved in the conversation. Because this is gossip at its worst, when words are used as weapons.

These word-weapons may be complete lies, or half-truths. Of course, any lie is sinful, but even if what is said about another person is true, but there is no real need to make the disclosure, then this harms the person’s good name. And that is slander if done maliciously.

We need to watch our words and our intentions in speaking them, both in face to face conversation and in social media. Words can indeed be weapons with disastrous effects for both the speaker and the receiver. After all, who wants to be around a back-stabber?