A reminder -- the nonprofit sector is the third leg of the stool which represents American Society. The public sector must address the lowest common denominator of public need; the private/for profit sector represents commerce and wealth and more or less the engine that is supposed to help all citizens lift themselves up by the bootstrap and if not prosper, at least eek an existence; and the nonprofit sector fills the void between the two sectors -- a void we recognize in this economy which is really huge, mostly in my opinion, because the for-profit sector has been more focused on making a few wealthy rather than distributing wealth.
I credit Frances Fox Priven for my earliest introduction (1972 - Sociology 101, Marquette University) to how American economy really works and what happens when only a few benefit. What I learned from Ms. Priven through my Sociology Professor played a large role in driving me to spend the last 34 years of my life working in the nonprofit sector. One element of this learning: dialogue plays an essential role in making our society functional and maybe even thrive for all. Nonprofits in particular (be it lay or faith-based) are often at the center of this dialogue -- again, filling the void. And, when dialogue -- freedom of thought and ideas -- is discouraged, nonprofits must step in.
I offer these thoughts because Ms. Priven in particular but open, honest and thoughtful dialog about what does and does not work is being attacked. For one example -- check-out Glenn Beck who has encouraged negative and even violent agitation against Ms. Priven. Nonprofit Boards, liberal and conservative should not accept this behavior and should call upon all who would thwart positive thought and dialog to cease and at minimum, not participate. All three legs of the stool must work cooperatively and supportively to create a society where all thrive, not just the few.