Is the NAACP Still Relevant?

For years, the critics have questioned the NAACP's relevance. They mention problems such as declining membership, closing of regional offices and ineffective marketing. The detractors assert that the NAACP is passé because of the passage of major civil rights legislation, the dramatic rise of the black middle class and the increasing number of black elected officials. Despite making great qualitative and quantitative advances, we have a long way to go to reach true equality. The condition of black people makes the NAACP relevant. A substantial segment of the black community has been left behind and forgotten. As result of institutionalized racism and benign neglect, America's inner cities continue to be plagued by failing schools, high dropout rates, poverty, high unemployment, drugs, violence, mass incarceration, sentencing disparities and police brutality. For many of African Americans, the American Dream remains just that, a dream.