Well, your etiquette sucks.
Check out this Q & A from an advice column that - no accident here - ran in the Albany Times-Union. Basically, "Hesitant," an attorney, has some good friends whose daughter plans on attending an excellent law school that might be below the "top tier." He's worried because he "knows" the market reality and is concerned that their daughter might wind up with disastrous debt. Should he "speak up?"
First, our advice-givers point out that "Hesitant" (like many scam-screamers) may not have the full picture, and that the student's parents may be planning to help with tuition costs. Regardless of the economic situation, "it may be worth it to them to see their daughter receive a professional degree, especially if it's in a field that particularly interests her." [as law inevitably does 50,000 times a year].
Further, the advice-givers properly point out that the best solution is to wait for them to come to you and then "encourage him or her to investigate the job offers that graduates of the schools to which Jess is applying are receiving." In polite society, we do NOT tell friends our earnest opinions backed with concocted "evidence." No; we take a genteel tone and meander around the truth while hinting at something that may resemble a vague guide towards our conclusions.
This is, indeed, how people versed in the Socratic method conduct a proper friendship.
[I]t's not up to you to tell them you think that law school is a bad investment for Jess.And Bingo was his Name-O!
If you want further advice applying these basic principles:
- It's not up to you to tell someone that their child is getting on a boat with serious engineering flaws headed straight for an iceberg.
- It's not up to you to tell someone that their future spouse is the bloodthirsty second coming of John Wayne Gacy.
- It's not up to you, Mr. Real Estate Agent, to tell a friend that they're purchasing a house contaminated with buried nuclear waste and dead prostitutes being peddled as a clean, modern house by the most shameless broker in town; you should wait until they ask you about the property and then vaguely hint at some glowing real estate records or something.
If you need this rule applied to any further hypotheticals, feel free to contact me. I went to a decent law school and can apply rule to fact all day and night.