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Opinion: Reposting Can Make A Difference

By Angie DeRosa
© NHS Greyhound

 

“Kony 2012,” a documentary released by the non-profit organization Invisible Children, has gone viral since its posting just a few days ago (March 5),receiving millions of views on YouTube and Vimeo. The 30-minute video has sent many individuals flocking to provide aid and others to put in their two cents regarding the relevance of the cause.
The film’s purpose is to raise awareness about children in Uganda, who are being captured by the Lord’s Resistance Army and forced to fight in gruesome wars. The children are even forced to kill their loved ones. Invisible Children hopes to bring Joseph Kony, the leader of LRA and a wanted man for more than 20 years, to justice for his crimes against humanity.

Anyone with a Facebook or Twitter account spends much of their time watching their news feed erupt with reposts of the “Kony 2012” film and hash tagging #MakeKonyFamous and #StopKony. With this generation of young people being so technology-oriented, the best way to get to them is through the Internet and with multimedia. But this is also a generation that questions the truth behind such videos, and many have raised concerns about whether or not the video is real based on its high production values.

Invisible Children started in 2003, but wasn’t officially a non-profit until 2006. Many have questioned, “Why now?” or “Posting a video online isn’t going to do anything.”

My question is, “Why not now?” The goal is to make Kony’s name recognizable to everyone. The constant comments and posting of the issue on social media networks and the Internet is the start of the movement. How is that “not doing anything?” Everyone knows his name. Everyone knows who he is and what he’s doing. Awareness is the key to the campaign; donating becomes secondary.

Despite Invisible Children’s presence for the last six years, not many people knew that Kony was a wanted man by the International Criminal Court, doesn’t make the cause any less worth fighting for. For example, Apple Computers was established in 1976, but the 21st century saw  rise in their popularity with iPhones, iPods and iPads. What about the 24 years prior? It doesn’t matter. All that matters is what’s happening at this very moment.

The first step is to bring Joseph Kony down. If enough people care and are willing to take a stand, this will be an easy task to complete. When a group of people come together as a community it not only encourages others to make the group bigger, but it also makes the impossible possible. I am speaking on behalf of anyone who believes nothing will change and that this is just a trendy fad that will soon pass. It won’t be. Social media brings social change – quickly.

As soon as Kony can be captured the next steps are to rebuild schools, educate future leaders, and provide jobs for those in Northern Uganda. This can all be a reality if we come together. Why just sit there and complain about it when you can make a difference, even if that difference is posting a video or sharing a comment. As Gandhi said more than 70 years ago: “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”

 

To view the film, visit: http:// www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MnpzG5Sqc

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