Raising an Activist
I have my share of opinions about Invisible Children’s Kony 2012 viral video experiment. They aren’t all positive. But they aren’t all negative either, especially after interacting with my 6th grader.
And while those of us caught up in the complexities of the situation debate the video’s shortcomings, those it is meant for, young activists, are mobilizing.
Today during recess, my son’s middle school lawn became such a scene. He paints a picture of a number of 11, 12, 13 year olds chanting, “We’ve seen these kids. We’ve heard their cries. This war must end. We will not stop. We will not fear….” And for the first time, he is riled. He finally gets child trafficking thanks to an emotional, powerful video.
At home he is in the door and on the computer in seconds. He’s going to buy the action kit, hang up posters on the night of April 20, wear the bracelet and take a stand, make a difference. They are sold out already, but he downloads jpegs, resolute in his purpose.
Over dinner, he updates Dad who has been in Turkey during the Kony 2012 frenzy. He rails on the government for not responding when just a few Invisible Children leaders come to Washington; mad that it takes hundreds of thousands of voices for politicians to act.
And I realize, none of the critiques really matter in the face of an 11 year old boy who wants to advocate for other children half a world away! There are far worse things to spend money on, hang posters over, and chant about.