I bet forfuturereferenceonly tried to stop Kony
white folks did y’all stop kony yet?
KONY 2012: Invisible Children Founder Admits Group A “Trojan Horse” For God
Jason Russell, the founder of the internationally acclaimed and criticized group Invisible Children, which released the viral video “KONY 2012,” was caught on tape calling his organization a “Trojan Horse” that will allow them to enter the secular world and introduce Christian fundamentalism, according to a report published today by Truth Wins Out founder Wayne Besen.
“This audio clip incontrovertibly shows Invisible Children’s invisible agenda,” said Truth Wins Out’s Executive Director Wayne Besen. “It is not simply about Kony, but being phony and concealing the motivation behind its deceptive campaign.” Besen adds:
Truth Wins Out has obtained exclusive audiotape from a 2005 Christian conference in San Antonio where Invisible Children’s co-founder Jason Russell calls his organization a “Trojan Horse” to introduce the secular realm to his group’s version of Christian fundamentalism. The audiotape reveals that that his organization is particularly focused on targeting youth in public high schools. According to Russell’s remarks (0:44):
“Coming in January we are trying to hit as many high schools, churches, and colleges as possible with this movie. We are able to be the Trojan Horse in a sense, going into a secular realm and saying, guess what life is about orphans, and it’s about the widow. It’s about the oppressed. That’s God’s heart. And to sit in a public high school and tell them about that has been life-changing. Because they get so excited. And it’s not driven by guilt, it’s driven be an adventure and the adventure is God’s.”
Invisible Children is the group that launched a viral video, KONY 2012, that reached millions of viewers worldwide and became an Internet sensation. The ostensible reason for the video was to highlight the brutality of Ugandan LRA leader Joseph Kony.
However, the group raised alarms after researcher Bruce Wilson showed the group was funded by the National Christian Foundation, a fundamentalist outfit that finances extremist right wing organizations and anti-gay groups.
Wilson also discovered that Invisible Children was intimately linked to The Family, the secretive and powerful American fundamentalist group widely considered responsible for Uganda’s draconian “Kill the Gays” bill.
The New Civil Rights Movement has reported on The Family many times. For those still unfamiliar with the shadowy Christianist political group, a quick review:
The Family, also known as The Fellowship, hosts the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C. every year, at which the sitting U.S. President always speaks. Past and present political members of The Family are believed to include Sam Brownback, Tom Coburn, Jim DeMint, Pete Domenici, John Ensign, Chuck Grassley, Jim Inhofe, Mark Sanford, Bart Stupak, John Thune, and Strom Thurmond.
The Family is believed to be one of the main principals behind Uganda’s Kill The Gays bill, and its author, David Bahati, is also believed to be a member.
Last month, well-respected investigative journalist and author Jeff Sharlet, who has written two books on The Family said Senator James Inhofe was “lying” when he told Rachel Maddow he was unaware of Uganda’s Kill The Gays bill.
KONY 2012 has had more than 100 million views on YouTube and Vimeo. The group, Invisible Children, today released “Kony 2012 Part II: Beyond Famous,” which purportedly addresses some issues critics have had with KONY 2012.
The Huffington Post notes today:
Invisible Children has released a sequel to its “Kony 2012″ film after more than 100 million viewers helped make the Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony infamous worldwide.
The new film “Kony 2012: Part II – Beyond Famous” released Thursday comes in the wake of worldwide criticism that the original video simplified complex issues related to the years of conflict in Uganda. The sequel aims to provide a more in-depth look at Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army, which turns children into soldiers and slaves as a means to destabilize the government.
In the video, Invisible Children offers what it calls a “comprehensive approach” to stopping Kony, which includes civilian protection, urging peaceful surrender, providing rehabilitation centers in post-conflict areas and arresting Kony.
Invisible Children co-founder Jason Russell, who suffered a highly public mental breakdown on the streets of San Diego, does not play a part in the film.
BINGO. Which is why I will ALWAYS call out racism and white supremacy where I see it. The truth will not be silenced for people’s fucking feefees.
Seriously I just wished their was someway for the world to see Jason Russell was a shady ass motherfucker and BAM! It happened. Yes! Yes! Yes! This is a good day! I should celebrate with Champagne this is so good.
A co-founder forInvisible Childrenwas detained in Pacific Beach on Thursday for being drunk in public and masturbating, according to San Diego Police Department.
Jason Russell, 33, was allegedly found masturbating in public, vandalizing cars and possibly under the influence of something, according to Lt. Andra Brown. He was detained at the intersection of Ingraham Street and Riviera Road.
Ah this was a good news day I see.
Edit: this gem from the comment section:
“Wasn’t the entire Kony 2012 campaign essentially this white guy masturbating in public?”
I lost all faith in humanity. This generation and their fucking slacktivism, white (Westerner) industrial savior complexes are truly disgusting. I mean seriously guys you can’t condense a complex issue and solution into 27 minutes of video. Especially not without Ugandan approval! Did y’all niggas forget Iraq already? Did that go well in y’all eyes?
HOLY WHITE PRIVILEGE, BATMAN.
I posted this video, then this girl I’m friends with shared it, then this guy commented so I had to argue.
“In the nicest way possible, they just need to shut up, because the awareness it’s spreading is really in their best interests.”
… “they obviously can’t comprehend the persuasive devices used”
that white person obviously can’t comprehend that black people are human beings…
I was so mad I threw Midsummer’s Night Dream across the room and punch the fucking wall. This Kony movement has to die immediately. Fuck James Russell, fuck Invisible Children, fuck ALL these white slackivist, fuck everything.
On Kony 2012: The Visible Victims Speak: Considering that Kony 2012 — the most viral video in Internet history — exploits the suffering of northern Ugandans to raise money, Victor Ochen, a victim of the Lord’s Resistance Army and a founder of the nonprofit African Youth Initiative Network (AYINET), thought it only right that they should get to see it too.
Ochen traveled to the city of Lira, where he and his NGO set up a makeshift outdoor theater so locals could watch Invisible Children’s much-discussed fundraising campaign, and decide for themselves if it helps or hurts.
According to a statement released by AYINET, over 35,000 people attended the screening, many of whom rode in on bikes from neighboring villages. Additionally, some two million northern Uganda residents tuned in to a live broadcast of the audio aired simultaneously on five FM radio stations.
Al Jazeera reporter Malcolm Webb, who was on hand to gauge people’s reactions, filed the following account:
People I spoke to anticipated seeing a video that showed the world the terrible atrocities that they had suffered during the conflict, and the ongoing struggles they still face trying to rebuild their lives after two lost decades.
The audience was at first puzzled to see the narrative lead by an American man – Jason Russell – and his young son.
Towards the end of the film, the mood turned more to anger at what many people saw as a foreign, inaccurate account that belittled and commercialised their suffering, as the film promotes Kony bracelets and other fundraising merchandise, with the aim of making Kony infamous.
A woman Webb spoke with afterwards compared IC’s approach of selling products with Kony’s image to “selling Osama Bin Laden paraphernalia post 9/11,” which she felt would be offensive to many Americans, irrespective of how “well-intentioned” the fundraising campaign was.
Last night’s screening was AYINET’s first and last. It announced this morning that it had suspended further screenings of Kony 2012 in light of the outrage it caused. Wrote Ochen: “It was very hurtful for victims and their families to see posters, bracelets and t-shirts, all looking like a slick marketing campaign, promoting the person most responsible for their shattered lives.”
“Why give such criminals celebrity status?” asked people in attendance, according to AYINET. “Why not make the plight of the victims and the war-ravaged communities, people whose sufferings are real and visible, the focus of a campaign to help?”
White people, y’all people is fucking up again.
Dear Jason Russell,
After being bombarded with your KONY 2012 crusade, I have no choice but to respond to your highly inaccurate, offensive, and harmful propaganda. I realized I had to respond in hopes of stopping you before you cause more violence and deaths to the Acholi people (Northern Ugandans), the very people you are claiming to protect.
Firstly, I would like to question your timing of this KONY 2012 crusade in Uganda when most of the violence from Joseph Kony and the LRA (The Lord’s Resistance Army) has subsided in Uganda in the past 5 years. The LRA has moved onto neighboring countries like the DRC and Sudan. Why are you not urging action in the countries he is currently in? Why are you worried about Kony all of a sudden when Ugandans are not at this present moment?
This grossly illogical timing and statements on your website such as “Click here to buy your KONY 2012 products” makes me believe that the timing has more to do with your commercial interests than humanitarian interests. With the upcoming U.S. presidential elections and the waning interest in Invisible Children, it seems to be perfect timing to start a crusade. I also must add at this point how much it personally disgusts me the way in which you have commercialized a conflict in which thousands of people have died.
Secondly, I would like to address the highly inaccurate content of your video. Your video did not leave the viewer any more knowledgeable about the conflict in Uganda, but only emotionally assaulted. I could not help but notice how conveniently one-sided the “explanation” in your video was. There was absolutely no mention of the role of the Ugandan government and military in the conflict. Let alone the role of the U.S. government and military. The only information given is “KONY MUST BE STOPPED.”
I would like to inform you that stopping Kony would not end the conflict. (It is correctly pronounced “Kohn” by the way). This conflict is deeply embedded in Uganda’s history that neither starts nor ends with Kony. Therefore, your solution to the problem is flawed. There is no way to know the solution, without full knowledge of the problem itself. We must act on knowledge, not emotions.
Joseph Kony formed the LRA in retaliation to the brutality of President Museveni (from the south) committing mass atrocities on the Acholi people (from the north) when President Museveni came to power in 1986. This follows a long history of Ugandan politics that can be traced back to pre-colonial times. The conflict must be contextualized within this history. (If you want to have this proper knowledge, I suggest you start by working with scholars, not celebrities). President Museveni is still in power and in his reign of 26 years he has arguably killed as many, if not more Acholi people, than Joseph Kony. Why is President Museveni not demonized, let alone mentioned? I would like to give you more credit than just ignorance. I have three guesses. One is that Invisible Children has close ties with the Ugandan government and military, which it has been accused of many times. Second, is that you are willing to fight Kony, but not the U.S. Government, which openly supports President Museveni. Third, is that Invisible Children feels the need to reduce the conflict to better commercialize it.
This brings me to my third issue, the highly offensive nature of your video. Firstly, it is offensive to your viewer. The scene with your “explanation” of the conflict to your toddler son suggests that the viewers have the mental capacity of a toddler and can only handle information given in such a reductionist manner. I would like to think American teenagers and young adults (which is clearly your target audience) are smarter than your toddler son. I would hope that we are able to realize that it is not a “Star Wars” game with aliens and robots in some far off galaxy as your son suggests, but a real world conflict with real world people in Uganda. This is a real life conflict with real life consequences.
Secondly, and more importantly, it is offensive to Ugandans. The very name “Invisible Children” is offensive. You claim you make the invisible, visible. The statements, “We have seen these kids.” and “No one knew about these kids.” are part of your slogan. You seem to be strongly hinting that you somehow have validated and found these kids and their struggles.
Whether you see them or not, they were always there. Your having seen the kids does not validate their existence in any shape or form or bring it any more significance. You say “no one” knew about the kids. What about the kids themselves? What about the families of the kids who were killed and abducted? Are they “no one?” Are they not human?
These children are not invisible, you are making them invisible by silencing, dehumanizing, marketing, and invalidating them.
Last year I went to Gulu, Uganda, where Invisible Children is based, and interviewed over 50 locals. Every single person questioned Invisible Children’s legitimacy and intention. Every single person. If anything, it seemed the people saw Invisible Children as a bigger threat than Joseph Kony at the time. Why is it the very people you are trying to “help” feel more offense than relief with your aid?
“They come here to make money and use us.”
“It makes us feel terrible to be presented as being so stupid and helpless.”
These are direct quotes. This was the sentiment of the majority of the people that I interviewed in varying degrees. I definitely didn’t see or hear these voices or opinions in your video. If you are to be “saving” the Acholi people, the very least you can be doing is holding yourself accountable to them and actually listening to what they have to say.
This offensive, inaccurate misconstruction of Ugandans and its conflict makes me wonder what and whom this is really about. It seems that you feel very good about yourself being a savior, a Luke Skywalker of sorts, and same with the girl in your video who passionately states, “This is what defines us”. Therefore, I can’t help but wonder if Invisible Children is more about defining the American do-gooders (and making them feel good), rather than the Ugandans; profiteering the American military and corporations (which Invisible Children is officially and legally) than the conflict.
Lastly, I would like to address the harmful nature of your propaganda. I believe your actions will actually bring back the fighting in Northern Uganda. You are not asking for peace, but violence. The fighting has stopped in the past 5 years and the Acholi are finally enjoying some peace. You will be inviting the LRA and the fighting back into Uganda and disturbing this peace. The last time Invisible Children got politically involved and began lobbying it actually caused more violence and deaths. I beg you not to do it again.
If you open your eyes and see the actions of the Ugandan government and the U.S. government, you will see why. Why is it that suddenly in October of 2011 when there has been relative peace in Uganda for 4 years, President Obama decided to send troops into Uganda? Why is it that the U.S. military is so involved with AFRICOM, which has been pervading African countries, including Uganda? Why is it that U.S. has been traced to creating the very weapons that has been used in the violence? The U.S. is entering Uganda and other countries in Africa not to stop violence, but to create a new battlefield.
In your video you urge that the first course of action is that the Ugandan military needs American military and weapons. You are giving weapons to the very people who were killing the Acholi people in the first place. You are helping to open the grounds for America to make Uganda into a battlefield in which it can profit and gain power. Please recognize this is all part of a bigger military movement, not a humanitarian movement. This will cause deaths, not save lives. This will be doing more harm, than good.
You end your video with saying, “I will stop at nothing”. If nothing else, will you not stop for the lives of the Acholi people? Haven’t enough Acholi people suffered in the violence between the LRA and the Ugandan government? Our alliance should not be with the U.S. government or the Ugandan military or the LRA, but the Acholi people. There is a Ugandan saying that goes, “The grass will always suffer when two elephants fight.” Isn’t it time we let the grass grow?
I can’t say it enough - a single video doesn’t paint the whole picture. The idea of spreading the word about Kony is good but Invisible Children is extremely inaccurate and is using out dated facts to sell itself to the public.
Media is a powerful tool and shouldn’t be underestimated.
This all perfect and shit