For the last week, Invisible Children’s Kony 2012 video has been spamming my news feed and timeline. I’ll admit, I was intrigued at first. Kony was trending on Twitter and I decided to do some investigating. Of course, because it’s trending on Twitter, the first thing I did was click through and check out what everyone was tweeting about. That was a mistake.
I’m going off on a mini-tangent here for a second. Sit tight.
Doing a Twitter search is normally useless and this time was no different. When something first gains traction on the Internet and people begin tweeting about it, every tweet looks like this: “WUT IS #KONY?!?!?!?!” These people must then anxiously wait for one of their 102 followers (57 of them are porn-bots) to fill them in. You’re already at a computer, it’s called Google.
When I hopped on Google I found the infamous Kony video and I watched most of it and thought, “Well, that was a bummer.” Then I went back to watching basketball.
The next morning, I found my Facebook and Twitter feeds overrun by a full-fledged Kony invasion. One thousand sorority girls proclaimed “OMG WATCH THIS! MAKE KONY THE MOST FAMOUS PERSON IN THE WORLD!” Virtual philanthropy at its finest, folks. There’s nothing like the sense of self-satisfaction that comes from watching a video and clicking share. Ah, justice has been served. That’ll show that mean old warlord!
People will get all bent out of shape for mocking this whole trend, because, after all, how dare you disagree with the Internet? And I’m not saying this situation isn’t horrible and Joseph Kony doesn’t to deserve a Hostel-like death. I’m just saying you’re not actually doing anything besides clicking a button.
Furthermore, where is that anger and energy over problems that are in, say, America? You know, the country we live in?
If you’re really against mindless and violent indoctrination of children — which ultimately results in needless death, a crumbling social structure, a disregard for law and humanity — you can do something about it. It might shock you, but we have a problem with that here too. They’re called gangs. Gangs who have networks that blanket the country and plague inner cities. They’re a real bitch.
You really want to make a difference? Go volunteer in D.C. or Baltimore. You’ll actually be affecting people’s lives.
Retweeting a video made by a couple of sketchballs about a nut job who runs around a country full of people who don’t even know what a computer is isn’t doing much. You might be “raising awareness,” but most people are going to just resume Facebook stalking after they make a status.
If you donate money to the cause, good for you (Unless it’s to Invisible Children). If it inspires you to spend time in Africa helping these people, fantastic. You’re a better person than I am. But if you’re not, shut it and stop clogging my news feed.
Taylor Schwink is a senior journalism major and student blogger for The Diamondback.