You probably grew up hearing the saying, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” (We’ve always preferred the Alice Roosevelt variation, “If you can’t say something good about someone, sit right here by me,” but the advantages of that theory are a discussion for another time.)
Today, we’re considering if the converse of the “don’t say anything at all” adage is true in the context of federal court rules: If people don’t say anything, does it mean that they didn’t have anything nice to say? If so, then no one had anything nice to say about the amendments to the First Circuit Court of Appeals’ Local Rule 35.0. Despite a request in June for public comments on proposed amendments to the En Banc Determination rule, the public failed to respond with opinions about the changes.
Maybe it’s because the changes were non-substantive.