Thursday, March 23, 2023
The Nonprofit Person of the Week
I got a note yesterday about my post on Streckfus. Not from Streckfus, himself, but a respected source nevertheless. Concerned that I might have insulted my subject and other folks I have sometimes profiled. I kinda doubt that anything insults Streckfus because he has been through things that pretty much make our magnified daily worries look silly. And that is one reason why I admire him even though I don't know him. He might have edited some things I wrote for EO Tax Review when it was part of Tax Notes, I don't remember. He is smart enough, you know, that he could have developed bone spurs or something. Instead, chances are high that I have seen Streckfus in one or two Vietnam war documentaries without recognizing him. I used to watch a lot of war documentaries and war movies. And I can only imagine how some drill sergeant pronounced his name during basic training. Probably "Streck-wuss" or some some such worse aberration.
If I mention a name on this blog, trust me, it is purely for praise and admiration, not for ridicule and insult. So long as the name is neither Trump nor DeSantis, but at least I am honest about my prejudices. The people I profile have done something very good for nonprofit/tax exemption jurisprudence in my view. If I say something stupid or inappropriate, by all means send me a nasti-gram. If its up to me any hate mail will be posted with much fanfare. Tucker Carlson's hate mail is dwarfed perhaps only be the boatloads of money he's paid for being way more stupid and insulting than I could ever be. Hate mail is better than no mail in the "look at me" business. But seriously, I am not trying to be provocative and I don't even get lunch money for this blog.
Lately I am trying to make this blog more predictable and a more desirable read -- not by shock and insult, though my mother has no filter and I am my mother's middle child. Nor by unserious assertions about the law of nonprofits and tax exemption. Churches really can do whatever they want with their tax exempt status. So on Fridays, if I am posting, I have introduced a new column called "Opinion Page" where I try to gather editorials and post them mostly without comment. There are editorials in the queue right now waiting on Friday. I am also endeavoring to profile one person a week. A cheap way to scare up clicks, I know, but the profiled persons are far from empty suits, and doing so tends to generate a sense of community. Readers of this blog are the "cool kids." I haven't called it "the Nonprofit Person of the Week," but that is what seems to be evolving. So far, its been Henzke -- somebody wrote me that he goes by "Len," not "Lenny" -- and Streckfus, but those aren't the only people I have watched over the years and whose work has influenced us all in positive ways about nonprofit jurisprudence. The profiles are all intended to be positive, even if tongue in cheek, and I am open to nominations. The caveat is that I am not going to email or call the subject for some sort of contrived interview. I am not a journalist I just play one on the internet. Besides I want to capture my subjects in the wild and interviews would just muck up things. I don't personally know the people I have profiled thus far and I only want to get to know them through normal interactions, not a fawning interview.
Most blogs are boring, even this one I imagine, and even when they try not to be. I am even thinking about introducing an original new graphic design layout to accompany regular installments of Nonprofit Person of the Week. I'm still considering possibilities.