If You Don’t Have Anything Nice To Say

Learn to say it nicely

Jennifer McDougall
An Idea (by Ingenious Piece)
4 min readJul 13, 2022


“You little…fudge sweetener…” Photo by Artur Voznenko on Unsplash

I call BS.

If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all.

Haven’t we all heard that?

Complete BS.

We’ve all had grandma grunt it at us. Or Dad, as he was wiping tears from our rage-encrusted eyeballs. Or Teacher, as they were scheduling your detention.

But I’m here to school you.

The advice of only saying nice things?

Crap. Utter crap.

We all have to say unkind things. It’s part of life.

I need to tell you that tripping your brother as he stood beside the stairs was a very bad idea.

Your essay on why using punctuation is against both literary freedom and your basic human rights? It sucked pickle juice [Did you get that message even without a period or exclamation at the end of that sentence?]

Ordering a customer to eat your excrement off their wife’s nobby nipples = bad business PR.

Giving the cat/hamster/fish a mohawk? Not a brainwave to be repeated.

There are crap things we will have to tell one another. It’s part of life.

Especially if you want your human-skill-filled time on this planet to involve any sort of betterment.

And so we must learn to use benevolence when mentioning the not-so-sweet things that need to be voiced.

And the credit goes to

This all sounds fairly commonsensical, right? And yet it was Kim Scott’s Radical Candor where the idea kicked me upside the noggin. Then it was Reuben Salsa reinforcing it through his article called Declaring War on Strangers And Their Pickle Nazi Fetish.

You decide to engage because it is immoral to ignore such a post. You wouldn’t stand by as somebody is racially abused in real life, would you? At the very least you would report the incident. So why would you scroll past a post? What the person has posted is wrong. It is vile. It is unethical. It is inappropriate content. You have to say something.



Jennifer McDougall
An Idea (by Ingenious Piece)

Attempting Serious and Satire... Sometimes successful. Editor, Doctor Funny.