I am hoping to find help understanding the sin of detraction. As I understand it, detraction is defined roughly as, “Disclosing the fault(s) of another to a third party without grave reason to do so.” I suppose my question is just as to what constitutes grave reason.
It may be helpful to have a look at a few examples and see whether grave reason is present in them.
Suppose that Tom Cruise stops in at the coffee shop where I am working, and he turns out to be incredibly rude, yelling at me for not getting his coffee to him within an unreasonable time period (this did not really happen). I then go to twitter and tweet, “Tom Cruise stopped by the coffee shop today. Turns out he’s a real jerk!” I suppose the motivation in doing this would simply be that it is funny (or that I would take it to be funny, at least), and that it brings humor to a potentially depressing situation. Does this constitute grave reason?
Here is another example- this one from real life. My mother throws all kinds of dirt on our neighbors (I am living with my parents for a brief time), and does the same about the neighbors of our last place of residence. Now, the thing is, I think she does this because she feels a sense of relief in being able to discuss the issues that she has with people. Does this constitute grave reason?
I am inclined to think that grave reason is present in both of the above cases, though to be honest my mother definitely does go overboard from time to time. Still I am lacking a clear principled account of what grave reason consists in, so any help on that front will be appreciated.
Further if anyone can provide any paradigmatic examples of detraction that will also be helpful so that I can understand more clearly the essence of that sin.