All I know about the NAACP is what I read in the news. So I'm writing as an average citizen.

From the latest news, the “average citizen” takeaway has to be … this organization is brain dead … shouldn't somebody pull the plug? … are all nonprofits this inept?

Not only are they laying off one-third of the staff, shutting down offices, etc., this is the second time they've been in dire straits since the 1990s, apparently failing to learn any lessons.

Quoting AP: “Fundraising troubles are forcing the NAACP to cut its national staff by a third, but the situation is nowhere as dire as the organization's financial problems in the 1990s, a spokesman said.”

I suggest all the folks who are fulminating about pressure to apply “business-like standards” to nonprofits should consider the case of the NAACP.

What a leap of faith it would take to give fresh money to this organization. How could the organization credibly ask for funds today? How many “nonprofits are nonprofits” advocates will pony up?

Are “fundraising troubles” at NAACP due to fundraising incompetence, to budgetary mis-management, to executive or board failure, to programmatic failure, to a faded mission (or at least an inability to remain relevant to a still worthy mission), to all of the above?

Whatever … when an organization comes as close to death as the NAACP, is it realistic to expect a resurrection, or is it better to just pull the plug?

This is an organization with a noble history. But does that alone mean it should survive?

Tom

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