Kony 2012 Campaign: Invisible Children
KONY 2012 is a film and campaign by Invisible Children to make Joseph Kony “famous” and raise support for his arrest.
I bet a few people are wondering, who is Kony? Joseph Kony is a Ugandan guerrilla group leader for the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), a group engaged in a violent campaign to establish a government based on the Ten Commandments. The LRA has gained notoriety by their brutal use of child soldiers, abducting and forcing an estimated 66,000 children to fight for their cause. Last October, Obama committed around 100 U.S. troops to support the Ugandan army and to remove Kony from power.
This campaign and film were created by Invisible Children, a nonprofit group that aims to raise awareness of the use of child soldiers and other human rights violations by the LRA. And while their cause is noble, they have accumulated a few critics along the way.
“These problems are highly complex, not one-dimensional and, frankly, aren’t of the nature that can be solved by postering, film-making and changing your Facebook profile picture,” explained the blog, Visible Children .
“Such organizations have manipulated facts for strategic purposes, exaggerating the scale of LRA abductions and murders and emphasizing the LRA’s use of innocent children as soldiers, and portraying Kony — a brutal man, to be sure — as uniquely awful, a Kurtz-like embodiment of evil,” criticized a writer from the Foreign Affairs publication.
But have all their propaganda efforts been for nothing? The film now has over 4,000,000 views (as of 3/7/12), raising awareness for this cause. And let’s face it, it takes huge public support to get an issue higher on the government agenda, especially during campaign season. So, while Invisible Children may or may not be the right organization for the job, the worst case scenario for this campaign is simply 4,000,000 better-informed people. Because, let’s be honest, who thought of child soldiers when they woke up this morning?