To comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable . . . Editor notes issue #82

This could be the motto for much of the nonprofit sector: to comfort the afflicted, and to afflict the comfortable. Originally said by Finley Dunne about the press, it's a good motto for us, too. Which are you doing today?

As you know, twice a year we do special issues with discounts that last just four days. The last issue was a hit: Blue Avocado readers love free stuff and great deals. Almost 500 people signed up for webinars and the response to the CornerstoneOnDemand offer almost crashed our servers: we got to the "first 100" in 14 minutes.

The one offer we're still waiting on is for our first reader to visit the Top Fun Aviation Toy Museum in Fitchburg, Massachusetts. If you go (free if you say "Blue Avocado") before the end of the year, send us your picture in front of the museum.

* Banking survey: thanks to so many of you who completed this survey sent by our new parent, American Nonprofits. The survey has some rough edges and many of the questions were included because they are required by the National Credit Union Association (which also required the survey). If you haven't taken the survey, click here to take the survey for individuals and here for organizations. [As of November 5, 2012, this survey is now closed. Thank you, everyone!]

* Query: for an article on nepotism in nonprofits, let us know your stories.

* Steal a Blue Avocado: don't forget that all Blue Avocado articles are designed to be reprinted in your newsletters, blogs and websites; see our reprint policy here.

* This issue we've got humor columnist Vu Le, an unexpected reflection on the Marriage Equality movement, an upside-down take on Citizens United, a deconstruction of sustainability, and more.

Everywhere I go people tell me they read and enjoy Blue Avocado. Thank you so much, all 64,000 of you, for making our work meaningful. -- Jan Masaoka

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Comments

Thank you for your excellent e-magazine. I am the elected secretary of The Embroiderers' Guild of America and have found your articles and links helpful with matters relating to my duties in that position.

Great website with valuable, relevant information.

Bravo Blue Avocado! Relevant, real world, and recommended! Thanks for all you do for all of us that enjoy striving to be the best for our NP organizations.

Debra Parker Smith, Florida Mosquito Control Association

I've generally enjoyed the Blue Avocado and it helped me through two board chair terms at two different agencies.I do however find the failure to recognize the very poor taste of the title of the article on Marriage Equality. (Re: "A Gay Activist's Schizophrenia about the Marriage Equality Campaign") So much work has been done in equity and human rights movements to attempt to ensure that derogatory terms or simple descriptors of one's identity are not associated with negative adjectives. What did the Blue Avocado feel it was acceptable to use a mental health issue that some many individuals and families grapple with as a descriptor? This type of careless consideration for language is in no way "comforting the afflicted." I'm deeply disappointed. I quite frankly expect an apology, otherwise I will be unsubscribing.

You are overreacting to one person's description of their feelings. Lighten up.

With all due respect to this person commenting, Merriam-Webster (and other sources) has a second definition for schizophrenia: contradictory or antagonistic qualities or attitudes Hence the author of the article was actually quite correct in his use of the word. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/schizophrenia I have often times described cancer cells as schizophrenic. There are many words in our vocabulary that have dual meanings. We mean no harm. Regards, Holly Anderson

There's more than one definition of gay too, so do you suggest I use it as a descriptor of attitudes in writing on human rights issues?

It does not seem to be one person simply over-reacting. Over 10 people commented on the article sharing the same sentiment. Thank you to blue avocado for this update posted on the article in question: 10/20/2012 -- We'd like to thank our very engaged, involved readers of Blue Avocado. We've heard you. This original article headline was not using schizophrenia correctly. Just read all the comments above. We are sorry to have offended anyone. We've made the changes to reflect a more appropriate tone. --Susan Sanow

Thank you for taking the time to write. We have posted a response to your concern directly on the article referenced. Jan

This is an article that makes you think "never thought of that!"

Dear Jan and everyone at Blue Avocado, I just wanted to let you know I so love receiving your emails. I think I can truly say that yours is the only mass email I receive that I have this reaction to. Your articles are always relevant and useful, if not immediately then in general. Your humor and wit is also very much appreciated. I feel your humanity in these emails--and that's apparently not easy to achieve in this format. Thank you for your work, Lisa Duran, Executive Director of Rights for All People, an immigrant rights organization in Denver, CO.

Thank you for making our month, Lisa! Jan

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