A few thoughts from watching Kony 2012: This is an awesome and inspirational video and awesome cause worth fighting for. It is fantastic to see attention brought to tragic foreign issues that affect humanity beyond what just impacts our own self-interests. I know there have been criticisms of Invisible Children, but from what I have seen they have done a great job of responding to critiques and disclosing financial and operational information. They are definitely in it to end this injustice.
However, hopefully we don’t end with Kony. Kony and the LRA are just the tip of the iceberg of global injustices. What Invisible Children has courageously demonstrated is a willingness to learn and expose injustices that have been hidden, and speak out about them. We are not truly following in their footsteps if all we do is share or watch a viral video. And it is shallow pursuit of justice if we only react when there is a clear villian we can point our finger at. One of the criticisms of the film is that it oversimplifies the issue, but in reality this should be a criticism of us, and the fact that we often won’t respond to any issue that is more complicated than what a five year old can digest, even for injustices they have claimed far more lives than Kony. Simplification is just what IC had to do to connect with us (and obviously it worked).
Anyway, let’s follow Invisible Children’s lead. Let’s stop Kony. Our voices do indeed matter, and make a real difference. And let’s not stop there, let’s follow their lead in truly learning about other injustices and making our voices heard. And we can indeed reshape human history, both in Uganda and in the rest of the world.
“Where you live should not determine whether you live… At the end of my life I want to say that the world we left behind is one [my child] can be proud of… A place where children no matter where they live, have a childhood free from fear.” – Jason Russell (cofounder of IC)