Anti-Kony advocacy fleeting - The Behrend Beacon

Anti-Kony advocacy fleeting

Posted on Monday, April 9, 2012 at 9:55 PM

Author: Jada Magwood (staff writer)

The internet gets hit with trending topics on a daily basis. These can range anywhere from celebrity news and gossip, to worldwide crisis and national events. 

Just a few weeks ago, I was roaming around on Facebook and was hit with so many sudden status updates and posts about a man named Joseph Kony. After seeing this sudden popularity about an unknown man, I went on to do some very scholarly research with the help of Youtube and Google, of course. Now, if you’ve been living under a rock for the past month and a half or have extremely restricted access to the internet, you probably have heard of Kony by now. A little background about him is that he is a Ugandan leader who is said to be a very dangerous man. This man forces young boys into being child soldiers and young girls into sex slavery. An organization by the name of Invisible Children, whose credibility has been under fire recently, created a short film that documented one of the many child soldiers under Kony. This video took the internet by storm and was soon passed around on numerous social networking sites as well as blogs. 

Invisible Children is a media based organization, so its whole purpose was to make Kony famous through sharing the video with friends on sites such as Facebook and Twitter. Soon after this video was popular all throughout the internet world, marches and walks were organized around some cities, college students were urged to spread awareness on their campuses, and Kony was the most talked about man at that moment. 

Now, fast forward to the present, and it’s almost as if everyone has forgotten about Invisible Children and Joseph Kony. The newest internet trend is the shooting of Trayvon Martin, a young man that was deemed “suspicious” by a neighborhood watchman and was shot and killed at the young age of 17. Just like the Kony trend, numerous walks and marches for Matin were organized throughout cities, petitions were passed around on social networking sites and blogs urging the court in Florida to send the Martin case to the Supreme Court, and it has become the most talked about national event in the past few weeks. 

I think we are living in a generation where what we care about is as vacillating as the fads we follow year after year. Do we really care about something when that particular thing becomes old news within just a couple of weeks? It seems as though the internet and technology serve as a fast reel for what we care and talk about for a week or so, and then after that, the reel spins again. 

Before becoming an advocate for people such as Trayvon Martin and the victims under Kony, we should ask ourselves if our sympathy is genuine if it is as fleeting as the trends we follow day after day.