No, not frustrated with stopping Joseph Kony, not frustrated with stopping child soldiers, not frustrated with do-gooders. Frustrated with Kony 2012. I’ve heard and read a lot of articles about how many of the facts in Invisible Children’s latest video were either extremely exaggerated or straight up false. I’ve also seen a lot of articles that disprove the articles that disproved the videos. I do believe that IC used a lot of false facts in the video, but that’s besides the point. I’m not that upset with IC, I’m upset with the squids who bought into it so quickly.
The video that went viral about a week ago was Invisible Children’s twelfth video. All TWELVE of these videos were designed to expose Joseph Kony and recruit people to try and stop him. So why did this one work? It’s because this video, no matter how false it may be, gave students the prospect of being a rebel for one night, that night being Cover the Night. Finally being able to put months of saying and graffiti-ing “Fuck the Police” into action caused these squids to blindly support a cause they convinced themselves they actually cared about. Now they think they’re social activists, spewing out false facts they learned from a 30 minute video, paying thirty dollars for their “action kit”, thirty dollars that they don’t know is going to help the child soldiers, or help produce IC’s next movie. If somehow a squid just happened to genuinely become interested in the cause just as the IC video went viral, that’d be very admirable to me. But I really doubt that’s the case.
It sucks because I know this is just a fad that will pass over really soon. It might not even last until April, making Cover the Night a total fluke. Just like everyone became an anarchist for a week or two at the height of the SOPA and PIPA issue, now everyone is becoming a social activist. And I don’t know how many more ignorantly righteous squids I can take. Because I’m not a bad person, I believe in stopping Joseph Kony, but I just don’t think this is an effective way of doing it.