The King James, and the translations closest to it, translate Paul’s instruction that Titus was to teach the disciples as “Speak evil of no one.”
This is a passage that we especially need to be mindful of as we enter this election season. The worldly-minded who have a partisan position and interest are often willing to say the most profane, disrespectful and horrific things about those in power and about those who seek power if they are on the opposite side. There seems to be no limit to the insults and accusations once some have entered the fray of partisanship.
Do such things slander and malign the other side? Often, but it seems of no consequence to the partisan. But “slander” and “malign” are the translation of Paul’s instruction here. (see NIV, HCSB, NASB).
Let us look at the entirety of Paul’s instruction for the disciples, remembering that it is based on the kindness of God that He has shown to all mankind to save us; to us: to those of opposing political views, and to the rulers who have been elected or appointed.
Remind them to be subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed, to malign no one, to be uncontentious, gentle, showing every consideration for all men. For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another.” (Titus 3:1,2)