- pleasing; agreeable; delightful
- amiably pleasant; kind
- characterized by, showing, or requiring great accuracy, precision, skill, tact, care, or delicacy: nice workmanship; a nice shot; a nice handling of a crisis.
- showing or indicating very small differences; minutely accurate, as instruments: a job that requires nice measurements.
- minute, fine, or subtle: a nice distinction.
Not good enough. Words are constantly redefined, changed. Decades ago fag used to mean rotting wood. Now it's used as a derogatory term for homosexuals. So, off to do some etymology -- that is, the history of words and their meanings. Turns out being nice doesn't mean what people think it originally means, and is a whole lot worse than that.
late 13c., "foolish, stupid, senseless," from O.Fr. nice (12c.) "careless, clumsy; weak; poor, needy; simple, stupid, silly, foolish," from L. nescius "ignorant, unaware," lit. "not-knowing," from ne- "not" (see un-) + stem of scire "to know" (see science). "The sense development has been extraordinary, even for an adj." [Weekley] -- from "timid" (pre-1300); to "fussy, fastidious" (late 14c.); to "dainty, delicate" (c.1400); to "precise, careful" (1500s, preserved in such terms as a nice distinction and nice and early); to "agreeable, delightful" (1769); to "kind, thoughtful" (1830).
So, to be nice is to be foolish, stupid, senseless or agreeable. Sounds appropriate. Instead, perhaps we should substitute niceness for the more appropriate kindness, although in the latter sometimes being kind means doing what a person needs done, not necessarily what they want done. Although the synonyms for "nice" include such things as "kind," in reality, the word is also used for "ingratiating" or "conciliatory." In both these cases you can see the "politically correct" ideal portrayed in the word itself.
So, being nice is to suck up to the ego of someone else, not to ruffle feathers. This is not being kind. It is ego-stroking, brazenly so.