Joseph Kony, a Ugandan guerrilla military warlord of the LRA (Lord’s Resistance Army), has been in action for over 26 years and is considered the world’s worst war criminal. He has kidnapped and mutilated over 30,000 children. Kony and his men kidnap children, forcing the girls into sex slavery and giving the boys guns turning them into child soldiers. Kony is fighting for no cause. His only purpose is to show that he has power.
“I had heard of him about a month ago, but it wasn’t until now that he gained notoriety. I noticed that the views of the video [Kony 2012] quadrupled over night. He’s a war criminal that tears children from their families. I don’t exactly advocate such atrocities.” Said Junior Riley Smithson
Senior Frannie Pearson along with GMSA’s (Globally Minded Student Activists) support is planning events to get Buffalo High School involved. One of the main events that Kony 2012 advertises is “Cover the Night” on April 20th, which encourages students to cover the town/school in posters about Kony’s actions, in hopes that people will ask questions about who this man is. Along with this, Pearson hopes to share “Kony 2012,” a YouTube video that made this cause viral with Buffalo students.
“Even with all the controversy going on about “Invisible Children” I feel it is still important to do something about this. This just isn’t something that should be allowed to continue.” Said Pearson.
Kony 2012 is an organization through not-for-profit Invisible Children that is attempting to make Kony “visible.” They are not attempting to raise money to send to the Ugandan military or the American forces in Uganda; their only hope is to to spread word of him and let the United States government know that even though it has no direct effect on United States citizens, people still care enough to expect our government to make some change.
“It’s a good cause, but the way we’re going about it is wrong. The organization is corrupt and people are not doing their research. We need to take action, instead of making it into another trend.” Said Senior Krissy Sayler.
There is a lot of controversy against this campaign, the Tumblr account “Visible Children,” questions the validity of what “Invisible Children” does with the money they receive from supporters. No where in the “Kony 2012” campaign does it say that the money they raise is going directly to supporting the governments finances in stopping Kony. Their purpose is to spread the word and make Kony known so he can be stopped. 20 celebrities have been recruited from Rihanna to Bono, and 12 governmental enforcers. This is all about raising awareness, not money. Although the campaign brought a lot of attention a week ago this seems to have been a faze, now the talk of Kony is once again dropping. After over 70,000,000 people viewed “Kony 2012” on youtube, it had been called propaganda and activists were losing interest because of the popularity and the controversy. Even through all of this trouble “Invisible Children” hasn’t given up, they are taking this attention as a chance to spread the word even. This is an organization that will not go down without a fight.
“I think all countries should become involved in helping and awareness. It needs to be not only stopped, but prevented and learned from. This is not how people should treat people in any situation.” Said Junior Bailey Braatz.