If you’ve been on Facebook or Twitter over the last 24 hours, you have probably seen people talking about the efforts to stop Joseph Kony from the organization called Invisible Children.
Here’s my response after watching the 30-minute film.
Let me start as a filmmaker. It’s an amazing piece of art. Propaganda maybe…but the best kind of propaganda there can be. For those who say the media of film and video can’t actually change the world, this will prove them wrong. This little movie will change national and international policy – and likely bring a tyrant to justice. It is always dangerous to overstate things, but I think this movie is no flash in the pan. It will make it into the history books.
Now as a Christian. The Kingdom come must include justice. Nothing is closer to God’s heart and Jesus’ mission than rescuing the powerless from the hands of oppressors. I have no idea if the filmmakers are Christians, and it really doesn’t matter to me. The passion of their call to action smells of Kingdom come. For that reason, I love it.
The backlash? Shortly after going viral yesterday, the organization behind the video received criticism.
Largely on two fronts:
1.) A perceived lack of integrity with their finances, with many noting that just over 30% of the donations go directly to help those in need. Read the company’s latest financial report here.
2.) The company’s support of the Ugandan military which has a questionable human rights history. Read an article here.
In response to these criticisms, Invisible Children released this statement today.
So, what are we to do? I propose the following:
1. Watch the movie.
It’s a masterpiece regardless of where you land in the end.
2. Do something.
If we trust the filmmaker, that is his ultimate goal – to move you to action. Resolve in this moment that you will do something to come to the aid of children in the world who are being oppressed.
3. Research Invisible Children.
Do your own homework. If you feel comfortable, support them.
5. Pray for Invisible Children.
If you elect to not support the Kony 2012 movement, you can still pray for justice to be done through their efforts. If nothing else, they have pulled our attention away from ourselves this week. That’s a miracle itself these days.
For me, I hope the movement keeps growing.
And that Joseph Kony is stopped.