For those of you who’ve been following my Twitter I’ve been after an internet cult of personality with a political agenda. No not TZM, they’re pretty much dead and we’ll get another glimpse of that this weekend when they open the coffin for another peek of the whole corpse. I’m talking about this KONY 2012 bullshit.
DISCLAIMER – LET ME STATE RIGHT HERE AND NOW SO YOU UNDERSTAND ME:
I’M NOT SAYING IT’S A SCAM, IT’S NOT A SCAM. THAT WOULD BE A TERRIBLE THING TO SAY AND COULD OPEN THE DOOR TO ALL KINDS OF LITIGATION AGAINST ME! I WILL SAY THAT I THINK IT’S A PILE OF ALIEN ZEBRA SHIT BECAUSE AS YOU KNOW ALIEN ZEBRA SHIT (or AZS for short) STUPID VIRAL VIDEOS THAT BEGS FOR MONEY!
Now that we got that out of the way I want to expose why this is a total AZS in a few key points for you to quickly understand, unlike the video, and get back to reality.
1. Kony is a monster, but a very little and outdated one. There’s no question that Joseph Kony is an asshole. He did kidnap kids, his army did rape and loot and pillage, all that bad stuff. He started this 26 years ago. When I was still a baby and before most of the KONY 2012 sycophants were even born. His violent military cult, LRA (Lord’s Resistance Army) has been largely inactive for the last 6 years and dissipated into other areas where they don’t do much. Kony was a bad man, and is now in hiding in another country. It’s clear though various government intelligence that Kony himself is no longer in Uganda and might very well be dead. So making him famous is a task that will go nowhere and might even turn out to be a 100% waste of time if he’s dead, as to a 95% waste of time if he’s not.
People thing they got the whole African situation figured out because a AZS video landed on YouTube with some very laid out emotional propaganda and little facts. What facts they do lay out are overly simplified and out of date and in words for a child to understand. This is not how you relate complex geopolitical problems to the public, especially if it’s wrong. Which it is.
2. War is not the answer. The film makes it very clear that we should urge our congress critters to use military force in Uganda to capture Kony. Now for a lot of kids that like KONY 2012 that means that we will send our troops to Uganda where they will prance in the daisies holding hands with the African children until they catch the big bad wolf and then a large parade will commence as the put the wolf in a cage and parade him around and everyone is happy. That’s not the way it works. There will be guns, there will be jets, there will be violence, there will be bombs, there will be gunfire because these are the tools of the military. You can’t expect a tool like the military to have a new function like you can’t expect a hammer to also serve as a screwdriver. You are advocating a war which comes with the whole package. The LRA will not turn over or comply peacefully. They are religiously motivated and will die for their cause and kill our troops as well.
If you think the Iraq war was bullshit, you can’t be for a police action in Uganda. If you do, you are a hypocrite because the mission is identical except Kony isn’t the leader of a state.
3. Ugandans don’t want us there. African regions have a long history of violence and bloodshed. You can’t fix it by sending western people to join in the violence and bloodshed NOR DO THEY WANT US TO. The Ugandan people have been pretty vocal about KONY 2012 and it’s been overwhelming opposition. When Ugandans tell you “Don’t worry about Kony, we have it under control” that should be a red flag right there.
4. Making Kony famous will do jack shit. Yay, now more people know about him. So what? Africa knows about him, he’s not news like he was to use a week ago. This has been around for 26 years. He is famous there. Unless you plan on having US citizens go wander around Africa, this will not do anything. Sorry. Like all the Facebook links, RT every tweet, he’s not getting anymore famous there. You could point to Iran but I would just argue 2 points about that. One, it was current events, not 6 year old information not applicable then, and two, the retweets had information for the Iranians to help fight back including police warnings and proxy lists. So no, you’re wrong.
5. Invisible Children is a giant emotional propaganda AZS producing organization. Now when people say ‘propaganda’ they usually mean bits of information they disagree with for mass consumption. It’s just a derogatory word. However in this case it’s not. This is a well crafted manipulative video that isn’t designed to give you any valid information, it’s there to play on your emotions. Even more so than Zeitgeist movies. It all focuses on this guy and his crotch fruit showing his emotions and that kid from Africa crying. From start to finish it was just tugging your heart strings not giving you information like a documentary should.
So when you buy their stupid “action kit” you send them 30 bucks. 9 bucks goes to the ’cause’ and the other 21 dollars goes to buying them tickets to fly around the world, stay and nice hotels, eat good food, buy them nice cars…etc. This is based on their tax forms. Now they put out a statement saying “Well yes, charities have overhead” which is AZS in it’s own right. No charity has that much overhead. Charities pride themselves on keeping overhead as low as possible and try to stay under 30% where as Invisible Children think it’s the other way around.
There’s plenty of great (not just good) charities that help out Africa. Red Cross and (RED) are 2 good ones of the top of my head. Invisible Children just seems like I’m enriching the lives of white American hipsters more than helping poor African children. Especially since most of the 30% doesn’t … actually this needs it’s own number.
6. If you support Kony 2012, you support kidnapping children and gang rape.
“The enemy of my enemy is not my friend.”
When you give money to Invisible Children, some of that 30% goes to the Ugandan and Sudanese Army which are no strangers to atrocities. These groups picked up the ball where Kony left off. In fact, the government of Uganda is the same government is currently trying to pass a law making it a crime punishable by death to be gay. This army will be the ones who will enforce it. This army has been known and is well documented that they find young women and girls and gang rape them sometimes to the brink of death. The Sudan armies pale them in comparison even kidnapping children for recruiting.
So yes, by supporting KONY 2012 you are actually doing more harm to Uganda than not sending money. Who knew some cheesy cheap bracelets could help cause such chaos and destruction. If you lost money to this, demand it back. Send back your action kit and demand a refund. You won’t get it but it will send a message. But I hoped you learned a valuable lesson from this as most people who joined TZM did, you just can’t watch a video and think you got life all sorted out because you laughed and cried at the right parts. Life is complex and can’t be summed up in a video with cool editing and effects. The things you support have other implications that are never presented to you in them and consider your 30 bucks a lesson well learned.