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Saturday, March 10, 2012

Taking a leap...KONY 2012

The man in the mirror…

I live my life, believing that “good” is the driving force that fuels people. I can’t bring myself to think that the world is predominantly filled with evil souls, with hearts of stone. Why always see the negative? Why always project and imagine the worst out of people and situations? Do we look at ourselves in the mirror and ask, “While I’m projecting my expectations onto others, do I myself live up to them?” There are many beautiful souls who bring hope and love into our lives, the world and if you’ve ever doubted that there’s an abundance of love and care for all God’s creatures, just take your blinders off and look around. Kindness is not latent, it has not disappeared. It is here right now, enveloping and bathing each and every one of us willing to receive unreserved love.

Three days ago, I was just going about my merry way when my niece asked me, “Auntie, do you know? Have you heard? Have you seen?” She was talking about the situation in Uganda and the Kony2012 movement. I hadn’t yet seen or heard about Joseph Kony, nor his outrageous actions against kids, that have been taking place for the last 20 years. My niece, my 2 kids and I all immediately headed toward my computer and watched the 30 minute movie called “Kony2012” that has flooded the social media sites, internet and news.

When the movie ended, my heart was full of sadness and I felt compelled to help. I felt, almost forced to participate and contribute so that I could be part of the change. Everything was clearly explained, making it easy for me to join the movement and be part of a possibly better horizon for the affected children and families in Uganda.

Let’s take a leap…Let’s walk on faith…
I felt so overwhelmingly compelled to donate to the Invisible Children organization and its cause!
Was it because I felt guilty? Well….. Maybe a little. Primarily, it was because as a person, this is the most I know I can do to help; I have that capability, I have that power.
To me, the organization has shown positive actions toward getting results. The fact that we are here today trying to justify and find the “rights and wrongs” on the matter, is full proof of the awareness they have raised. My raised ignorance is a testimony to their work. Now it is up to me to react as best as I can in response.

I was unaware, and now I know. However, do I as a person, have the capability and drive to start a cause to help “the less than”? No. Am I capable to affect and create the awareness that they are creating right now? No. Can I see beyond my own selfish needs and commit years, exclusively to helping a group? No.

The kids and I did monetary participation by each purchasing the organization’s bracelet; to not just stop there, I decided to also use social media and continue spreading the message by posting the video on my FB page. I felt good! I felt as though I was involving myself in a good cause but the rewarding feeling turned out to be short term…

Just as fast Kony2012 flooded the internet, anti-Invisible Children videos started to surface and bash the work, casting doubt on the organization’s motivation and funds distribution.


What is shameful is that this situation in Uganda is a condition that has been going for the past 20+ years. For whatever reason, it took this long for me to have my ignorance on this matter shaken up. And shaken up by a group that was created 7-8 years ago, who because of their perseverance have finally built a voice loud enough to wake people up ALL over the world and bring awareness to this matter. And now while we are sitting on our sofas, doing less than nothing about it, we want to be self-righteous and count our pennies and where and how they are going to be distributed?
I think, what’s even more disgraceful than us questioning someone’s created cause to raise awareness about the situation is, now we want to investigate it before we lend our voice.

Does vouching to help someone, have to mean self-sacrifice? Does the message come across louder and clearer if I put myself in the helpless predicament of the people I’m trying to help? Nobody signs up to fight for a cause where, to prove their credibility, they starve to death, don’t pay their rent, nor take care of their kids to show their sincerity, devotion toward the issue and compassion for the people involve. I do find it audacious how as people, we are inclined to believe someone has to do for us, and when someone does, than we want to criticize and focus on the wrong. I’m not naïve enough to think that all the nonprofit organizations, charities, etc. are 100% honest in their apportionment of funds collected, but what I will say is that as long as I’m not creating the concept of a change through actions, who am I to judge those that have?

We say, about our people in RDC that were raped and killed, “They have seen nothing!” What do we say what about the people in Haiti after the earthquake? “They have seen nothing!” The Tsunami survivors? “Nothing!” To all that I say, I don’t believe they have seen nothing, what I believe is that they didn’t see the whole thing. They probably didn’t see half or a third of it, as far as some organization goes and although what they saw may not have been enough, they got help, they got something! And that something, however big or small, is better than nothing. Why do we feel so entitled and believe the outside world need to fix us? Let’s start with ourselves fixing ourselves. I’m here living in a world of security where my kids are safe with me, going at school, have a hot meal every day and have a roof over their head.  So, I won’t be the one to cast a stone at ANYONE who is making an effort, while I’m sitting on my plush sofa!

You want to do research? Yes, let’s do some research. What are you going to find? What are you going to find out that you should have known right of the gate?  You are going to find out that yes, there is a chain of command of people that have to be put in together to manage, brainstorm, come up with tactics and those to put them into action. Yes, you are going to find that although it is called a nonprofit organization, there are salaries to be paid. Those people working or trying to, need to also feed not only themselves but their families.

I posted on my Facebook page after reading that people should be very cautious about financially supporting The Invisible Children Organization and the Kony2012 movement;
“Even if only $2 out of the $40 my family and I donated by buying bracelets gets to the cause, for me it will be $40 well spent. Any well working machine needs oil to keep it functioning, human brains to give it a purpose, and power for continuous results; all put together, that might be where the $38 went…and that’s ok by me. By looking for the negative in everything, NOTHING will ever get accomplished; at the end of the day, awareness of the issue has multiplied and that again is worth the mere $40 I put in. My 2 cents…”

I may be wrong. I could be a fool. Call me gullible, trusting or naïve but I took a leap of faith. I choose to believe in the good of all people and act, consequently. I leave it to the higher being to judge who, when and what needs to be.

When was the last time you step out on faith and took a leap of faith towards the unknown? When was the last time you look further than your visual peripheral?

Be sensitized about the issue.
Make use of your power and get involve.

         Love always,
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