March 8, 2012

Kony 2012

Kony 2012 is a thirty minute documentary, made by Jason Russell of Invisible Children, that focuses on raising awareness about Joseph Kony, rebel leader of the violent Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) and bringing him to justice.

Watch the video. 

Kony and the LRA are responsible for abducting children, sexually abusing them and using them for war in central African areas such as Uganda, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic.

The aim of the video is to make Kony famous, to ensure people know who he is and what he does, so that he can be stopped. It wants an awareness movement, so that in the year Twenty Twelve, twenty culture makers (various celebrities) and twelve policy makers (various congressmen and senators) learn about Kony and can then implement the change to ensure his arrest in 2012.

The video has had more of an effect than was ever anticipated. The link has gone viral over Facebook and Twitter and, at the time of writing, has been viewed more than 15 million times on YouTube.

People are unanimously showing their support for the Kony 2012 campaign.
And I have a problem with this.

None of us really know about Kony, or Invisible Children for that matter. The documentary is crafted in such a way that it makes you feel like you have to do something, it motivates you to stand, chanting against the injustice.

I have absolutely NOTHING against people supporting something they believe in.

The problem I have is that everyone is going crazy over this campaign and jumping on the bandwagon of support, after only being influenced by the video.

A video created by a charity or movement will always leave you wanting to help that particular organisation.

So before you support Kony 2012, Invisible Children or any charity or organisation, do some research. Don't just go in blind because of the emotion or because everyone else is.

Decide whether it is worth your time, money or talents. Ask questions. Find resources and statistics. But please, know what you're supporting. 

If then you are still in favour of supporting it, absolutely go for it.

I want to see Kony captured just as much as anyone else. I believe justice is important. These past few days since the video has been released have shown the power of the internet community in an incredible way. But I just think this is an issue greater and more complicated than one man.

Most of all, I think that charities and organisations should be supported and represented because people are 100% committed, passionate and dedicated towards every aspect of what that organisation represents, not just one video.

Invisible Children have given answers to a few of the tricky questions that have arose here.

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