Wednesday, March 7, 2012


If there was ever a bandwagon to get on, this is it.
Today, we learned a name that is unknown to most of the world, 
but has meant terror and death to over 2 million people:

Joesph Kony.

Many people are aware of the grip of chaos that rebel armies hold the African nation of Uganda in, and many are familiar the plight of children abducted and forced into military and sexual enslavement by these rebels. But a new campaign has just been launched from the non-profit Invisible Children, which aggressively seeks to educate the world on the root of these crimes against humanity: a man named Joseph Kony. The campaign, Stop KONY 2012, reveals that this perhaps unfamiliar name has been deemed "the world’s worst war criminal" by the International Criminal Court, and effectively puts a face to the root of the Ugandan atrocities. Stop KONY 2012 explains that "[i]n 1987 [Kony] took over leadership of an existing rebel group and renamed it the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA). The LRA is encouraged to rape, mutilate, and kill civilians–often with blunt weapons. The LRA has earned a reputation for its cruel and brutal tactics. When Joseph Kony found himself running out of fighters, he started abducting children to be soldiers in his army or “wives” for his officers. In its 26-year history, the LRA has abducted more than 30,000 children and displaced at least 2.1 million people."

Although we may have been familiar with the Ugandan situation, it's easy to feel that it is way beyond our control. New information can be difficult to process: how do you wrap your brain around the unthinkable monstrosities occurring in an unseen country across the globe? This difficulty is exacerbated when we have so many daily troubles in our own lives-- however trivial in comparison, our own anxieties can make us feel powerless to help even ourselves, let alone an entire nation. But KONY 2012, an extremely smart and relevant campaign, has actually made it easy for anyone to effectively help using "creativity and social action". KONY 2012 knows you can make a difference by doing one simple, free thing today. 

Just make the name of Joseph Kony known this year. That's it.

The goal of KONY 2012 is to "make Kony famous, not to celebrate him, but to raise support for his arrest and set a precedent for international justice". When we spread the name of Joseph Kony, this is what happens:

We spread the name of Joseph Kony --> 

--> We show our policymakers that we care --> 

--> Policymakers keep American and international advisers in Uganda -->

--> Advisers give Ugandan officials the tools they need to track and capture Joseph Kony -->

--> Joseph Kony is tracked and captured --> 

--> 30,000 children are freed from military and sexual enslavement

So how do we spread the name of Joseph Kony? 
It is easy to make the name known in these 6 ways:

1. Liking and sharing KONY 2012 on facebook, tweeting to #StopKONY, liking and sharing the movement's organization, 
Invisible Children, on facebook, and following on twitter and tumblr.

2. Singing the KONY 2012 pledge.

3. Messaging the 20 culture makers + 12 policy makers whose voices have the biggest impact on change in our world.

4. If you do want to spend money, you can order the KONY 2012 Action Kit for $30, which includes everything you need to help spread the word: a T shirt, bracelet, stickers, buttons, posters, and an action guide. (You can also order any of these individually).

5. Donate as little or as much money as you want. When you give $15 monthly, you receive the Action Kit for free.

6. Blog and re-blog, of course!

Lastly, this short film not only outlines the path of KONY 2012 in a clear and comprehensive manner, it also captures the humanity of our world in an extraordinarily beautiful and clever way. It premiered today, and I am certain it will change something within you.

Let's make the name of Jospeh Kony known and stop him in 2012!


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