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Kony 2012

Kony 2012 is something pretty amazing and makes a statement to the public that this is getting serious. Kony 2012 isn’t necessarily a funny video that got passed around to provide a quick laugh. Clearly, Kony 2012 has become the fastest-spreading viral video in the history of the Internet. In just six days, more than 100 million people around the world watched it. That’s pretty remarkable especially when you consider that it took Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” 18 days, Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” 114 days to crack the 100 million mark. I am a strong supporter of invisible children and feel that Kony 2012 is an issue everyone needs to be aware of. However, some people may think otherwise. There are 3 reasons to why this video went out and only one ways to end the man named Joseph Kony.

Before I begin to tell about Kony 2012, we all need to know what has been happening up to now. From the very beginning, Joseph Kony was born in 1961 in the village of Odek among the Acholi people of northern Uganda. He inherited power through his aunt because she was the tribe's mystic who started the Holy Spirit Movement, which sought to unseat the Kampala government. This movement was started by his aunt, Alice Auma, and required that the Acholi people retake the capital city Kampala. It was believed that doing so would redeem the Acholi from the violence they had collectively done to the civilians of the Luwero triangle and create a paradise on earth. Soon after the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA), led by Joseph Kony, operated in the north from bases in southern Sudan. The LRA committed numerous abuses, including the abduction, rape, and killing of civilians, including children. In addition to destabilizing northern Uganda from bases in Sudan, the LRA congregated in the Bunia area in eastern Congo. The LRA continued to kill, torture, rape, and abduct large numbers of civilians, and enslaving numerous children. Although its levels of activity diminished somewhat compared with 1997, the area that the LRA targeted grew. The LRA sought to overthrow the Ugandan Government and inflicted brutal violence on the population in northern Uganda. LRA forces also targeted local government officials and employees. The LRA abducted large numbers of civilians for training as guerrillas. Most victims were children and young adults. The LRA abducted young girls as sex and labor slaves. Other children, mainly girls, were reported to have been sold, traded, or given as gifts by the LRA to arms dealers in Sudan. While some later escaped or were rescued, the whereabouts of many children remain unknown. In addition to being beaten, raped, and forced to march until exhausted, abducted children were forced to participate in the killing of other children who had attempted to escape. Amnesty International reported that without child abductions, the LRA would have few combatants. More than 6,000 children were abducted during 1998, although many of those abducted later escaped or were released. Most human rights NGOs placed the number of abducted children held captive by the LRA at around 3,000, although estimates vary.

The LRA rebels stated that they fought for the establishment of a government based on the biblical Ten Commandments. They were notorious for kidnapping children and forcing them to become rebel fighters. More than one-half-million people in Uganda's districts had been displaced by the fighting and lived in temporary camps, protected by the army.As the years progressed, the LRA lessened their attacks in Uganda and began to attack other regions. They spread to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Sudan, and the Central African Republic (CAR). The LRA continued to move between these 3 regions and evaded capture despite the efforts made by joint military operations of the countries. The LRA continued to plague these regions with their only goal being survival. They performed raids on remote locations to gather food, money, or people. This all sounds extremely horrible and it is but invisible children want to help. The only problem is should they be helping, and how is this affecting the United States and our people?

First of all, the organization told its own story first, a story of how it developed passion for the issue, how its members came together, and why it’s important that we help. “Invisible children” is an organization that gets the word out there. There’s no doubt that these people want to help everyone and help bring the children and families to safety. They may seem a little too simple but if it was any more complex, you would not have watched the video or looked any further to anything. They made it a choice, a choice that after watching the video you could help but looking more into how exactly you can help. Even if you post kony 2012 on any network someone will see it and that’s one more person thsat know knows that information and can continue spreading the message. This was meant to happen; it was meant to show the youth that no matter what we can help. To explain in brief, Joseph Kony is the leader of the LRA, which is a group of rebels that takes children in Uganda and forces them to act as LRA soldiers. The girls are forced to act as sex slaves, and According to the film, there have been “30,000 such victims since this LRA reign of terror began 26 years ago.” Forced acts have included mutilation of others and even forcing kids to kill their own parents. The story isn’t just this simple there’s is more going on and more information about joseph Kony before and now. But they let you decide on if want to explore all the in’s and outs of the LRA, Joseph Kony, Invisible children and all the people trying to help. Therefore this needs to be stopped but some think it will not happen.

Second of all, they made the story simple. The issues in Northern Uganda are very complicated. But Invisible Children chose to simplify those issues by focusing the video on the story of one bad guy: Joseph Kony, head of the Lord’s Resistance Army, operating in Central Africa. The video places a strong focus on emotion, which, in turn, inspired many viewers to share it and take action. No one would watch the video it was an hour long showing everything that has happened. However this is not their first video and they have ways to get more involved. This simple video showed whats happening and how to help. It may seem like they just want your money and they will pocket most of that then help the children. Some things do seem fishy, now that I know more and more on this topic I cannot tell you enough how much every little bit makes such a change. Even though the story is simple it does seem to gloss over the current LRA situation for example, Kony and the LRA are no longer in Uganda and have been forced into neighboring countries like the DRC, Central African Republic, and South Sudan. Also LRA numbers are now in the hundreds rather than the thousands. Children are no longer being taken as often and things with joseph Kony and his mind have begun to settle. He believes he is fighting for himself and his freedom this is how he feels is the right way.

All the viewers are the heroes; this video isn’t about Mr. Kony. It’s about the viewer and how that person can be the hero by taking action. In the video, Mr. Kony is portrayed as evil, as if he is a villain in a superhero movie. And if he is the evil villain, then you, the person fighting him, are the hero. At least this is how I think of it. Everyone can watch something and somehow relate it to your life but Kony 2012 is something we have never lived and we did it would be impossible to survive. We live the classy life of technology and amazing home and family’s. What if all that was taken from you in one night? The only way to spread Kony 2012 in this world is to go straight to the networks, and it worked. So why wouldn’t you want to be the superhero of 30,000 little boys and girls? Now not everyone sees it this way. We have tried to help before and it hasn’t worked we tried playing the hero and we got smashed so why keep trying? It can hurt or help us. Before anyone jumps to things we should have thought and found out more information.

The new video Kony 2012 part 2, posted a month after the first Kony 2012 it has a long section providing details about Invisible Children. After going into the organization's background, Kony 2012 Part 2 provides a brief recap of the situation in Uganda that implicates Kony's Lords' Resistance Army. The narration only briefly touches upon the controversy generated by the original video. After Kony 2012 went viral, critics accused Invisible Children of oversimplifying the crisis in Uganda. Kony 2012 Part 2 provides no direct response to that criticism. However this video is very informational they tell you what has already happened and will be happening. To me it seems like a way to show that we all are making a difference, things are happening. People say “it’s working.” We want to stop Joseph Kony and all the suffering he has caused. On July 20th 2012 they are holding an event called “cover the night”. This is a time when thousands of people will be making Kony famous by making posters and showing the world how to unite. There is a video that follows this it tells about what will happen and what you can do because every single person can play a part, there’s no money needed all they ask is for you to be creative and cover the night making Kony famous.

Even though Kony 2012 has amazing way to help these people they also have some down falls. Some feel that they are spending too much money in the wrong places. Or they are trying to help but it is only going to come back at us. “U.S. President Bill Clinton professed that he was "helping" in the Democratic Republic of Congo in the 1990s and his help ended up with over 6 million people losing their lives” (Deibert, 2012).We have already tried in the past to help and we called it Operation lighting thunder and Christmas massacre. “The operation failed. Joseph Kony somehow learned of the attack in the hours before the air-raid and so he was able to escape” (Makameri, 2012).“This was in December 2008” (Makameri, 2012).Tell me why it could not happen again. If he is known by everyone he will know as well and he has escaped before. Also once we stop Joseph Kony someone will just take his place. So this issue is much bigger than one man. The creator is passionate but unrealistic at the same time. But that does not take away from the fact that the cause is very admirable. Spending is something that we have to consider. When I see things like “16.24% on administration and management costs; 3.22% on direct funding in 2011” it makes me disbelieve what this Christian organization has been doing. They have “spent more than $8.6 million last year, ‘only 32 percent went to direct services with much of the rest going to staff salaries, travel and transport, and film production’ “I can’t say that I think this organizations money is being spent on the right things” (Francis, 08/M). This money is something they make big, at the end of the video they show how you can help. Sending money and donating is encouraged. How do we know that these numbers are right or wrong?
We soon ran into another problem. Jason Russell .The man behind invisible children all the way, the man who got the spotlight and who created such amazing videos and a great organization. After a breakneck media tour, Russell snapped. He was discovered nearly naked, wandering the streets, babbling incoherently. It was also reported he was pulling his underwear off and masturbating in public. Though the official press release from Invisible Children is that Russell’s theatrics were a result of exhaustion, dehydration and malnutrition, speculation is that he was under the influence of controlled substances. This is the story and what has been said, heard and viewed by the public. Invisible children were once a small group with a limited budget and a compelling story that can rock the media’s world on its heels. They can command the public’s attention and focus millions of people on a common goal. The problem is that, to date, Kony is still at large, and the story has devolved into the drama of Jason Russell. He is humiliated; the organization risks the loss of all credibility. Children are still at risk of abduction, abuse and murder in Uganda, but we’re more fascinated with a guy making a fool of him when he withers under the intense glare of an unexpected spotlight. Yes, Jason Russell messed up, and his timing could hardly be worse. Here’s how I see it, in a break down we all want to feel good about ourselves and do good for others. When given the choice between digging deeper into the problem of child soldiers in Uganda and a clicking on a headline about a man in his underwear then reading further into that, this is where I see a problem. A problem with us the people, we can’t stop and look at the important things because were so focused on our lives and on the people we wish to be that we pass the times we had to make a difference. Some might say the ugly side of this story is what happened to Jason Russell. I say it’s the fact that we made what happened to him a story at all. This isn’t about Jason; it never was.

Invisible Children with is a growing army of virtual supporters that can take down an evil man, but there is evidence to suggest that, if done right, online enthusiasm for a cause can translate into real-world change. For better or for worse. Kony 2012 offers some insights, good and bad into how to capture the world's attention. The truth is no one knows the truth. We do not have cold, hard proof that Kony did what he was accused of doing. However what we are sure of, and what we do have proof of, is that Kony is trying to impose his beliefs using force and violence. “I’m a freedom fighter, fighting for the freedom of Uganda, not a terrorist” (Lehr) said by joseph Kony, he thinks he is doing the right thing.He is responsible for the death of many people. Invisible Children has created this campaign to make Kony answer for his actions. Personally, I believe Invisible Children. I think they have a very clear mission which is not too broad .They are focusing on one issue at a time, and they’re using their resources and skills very effectively to promote their campaign and their organization. Whatever the case is, the invisible children group has done their part whether they have succeeded or not. They have identified the conflict and made a global issue worth tackling.




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pandagirl312 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 17, 2012 at 4:25 pm:
I thought this was well written (although long and with lots of facts) until I reached the seventh paragraph. Cover the Night was NOT on July 20. It was on April 20. When writing a long, nonfiction essay such as this one, one must really make sure their facts are straight.
 
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