Saturday, April 07, 2007

Are civil rights groups still relevant today?

The title of a recent Sun-Times article from April 1st. It was also the subject of a Capitol Fax Question of the Day. So let's ask this question.

I think there will always be a need. Some group will feel like their rights are being walked all over. And it's easy for me to associate Civil Rights with minorities and certainly because blacks are one group that fought successfully for their rights here in America.

Still that's not to say that there has to be a change in tatics. This requires changing with the times and there are some who might be stuck in the 1960s mode where civil disobedience (such as sit-ins, protests, getting arrested, etc) was the rule of the day. Some will even accuse these groups of being co-opted by politics instead of fighting the good fight for what is right, although you do have to work with politics. Still this means a new model and some new ideas and those civil righters who are old-school may not have that.

Let me mention a case in point. Last month the CEO of the NAACP resigned his post. Reading what I read out of this news was there was definitely a personality clash here. And I thought of it as a clash between those stuck in a 1960s mindset vs. new ideas. Of course the one thing you will run into if you look into this story is the basic excuse, well he wasn't doing what the board of directors wanted him to do. That's not to say it's an excuse, you need the support of the board, if you don't have it then you can't succeed.

Either way I was glad to have found this article and to be able to have saved this in my links on Sunday. Hopefully civil rights orgs and others may eventually find they answers they are looking for. And that they'll be ready for another century of service.

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