Is being nasty the same as being cruel, or even tough for that matter? That is the question I am posing.
People can be very nasty, especially when they are upset, and nastiness can be very hurtful. Tough love can be painful too, but surely there's a difference between speaking hard words of truth, or acting in a superficially unloving way, in order to truly love someone, and simply being spiteful. Love desires the highest good for its object. Love wants what is best. Undoubtedly, this requires some very stern, even hurtful words, on occasion.
I suppose it depends on the intent. What motivates the nastiness? I'm not a mean person, I never deliberately try to injure people with my words. It isn't likely that anyone would confess to being nasty, but we have all met nasty people. Bullies are nasty but they aren't motivated by anything even remotely resembling love. People say nasty regrettable things when they are tired, stressed or angry, but it isn't with the intention of somehow ultimately displaying some kindness, is it?
A distinction between nastiness or cruelty, and tough love must be drawn. Is nastiness necessary? Ever? Do you have to be cruel to be kind? What do you think?