Thursday, March 8, 2012

Kony 2012

The Kony 2012 video was released Monday. I first heard about it on Twitter Tuesday, watched it Wednesday and then shared it with all of my students today. It has millions of views and is being spread like wildfire. If you haven't watched it yet, please do. 

I learned about Invisible Children when I was at Hope and part of the Global Night Commute, a huge event that spread awareness about the Ugandan children that commute every night to escape the threat of being abducted. The organization has been working for nine years to help the children who have been taken by Joseph Kony, leader of the Lord's Resistance Army (LRA).

They have decided that 2012 is the year that Kony must be captured and it's going to happen because of the power of many. With people all over the globe connected through social media, we have the power to make this issue important enough that it cannot be ignored any longer. They want Kony to become famous so he can no longer hide.

The vast majority of the people who have been involved as leaders, interns, contributors, advocates, participants and supporters of the Invisible Children have been the youth. Young people stepping up to say this is not right and we are going to do something about. It was incredibly exciting today to see my students feel empowered about doing something. They want to make YouTube videos sharing their reaction, write letters to Washington, get the action kit and participate in Cover the Night, repost the video and contribute money to Tri. They are twelve, thirteen, and fourteen and they believe they have power to change the world for the better. I'm proud of them.

And just as you would expect with a movement this big, this intense, this urgent, there are plenty of people out there already saying that it's a scam or that it's too big of a problem or that it's not real. But here's the thing-- there are people and articles and evidence for both sides. I've seen and heard the stories of the kids in Uganda and I refuse to be silent about what is happening. I don't want to look back on this period and history and think that I wasn't sure, so I just let it happen. This is about fighting for kids who can't fight for themselves.

Where you live shouldn't determine whether you live.

Fight for them, because that is what is going to change the world and that is what defines us.

It's hard to look back on some parts of human history because we heard about injustice, we cared but we didn't know what to do--too often we did nothing. But if we're going to change that we have to start somewhere. So we're starting here, with Joseph Kony. Because now we know what to do.

We are not just studying world history, we are shaping it.

The people of the world see each other and can protect each other. It's turning the system upside down and it changes everything.

All images and text from Kony 2012.

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