'Kony 2012' and Youth Activism
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The video Kony 2012 has gone viral with lightning speed, with the claim that massive "awareness" can bring down a brutal African warlord who kidnaps children. We look at the source of the half-hour production's appeal and why it might be counter-productive. Also, talks between President Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron are clouded by events in Afghanistan. On Reporter's Notebook, increased gasoline prices may be damaging President Obama's poll ratings, but does any president have the power to make a difference?
Banner image: Screen grab from Kony 2012, in which Jason Russell talks with his son, Gavin, about Joseph Kony
Obama-Cameron Talks Clouded by Events in Afghanistan ()
British Prime Minister David Cameron is visiting the White House today, after he and President Obama co-authored a Washington Post op-ed piece promising to stand fast in Afghanistan. But yesterday's alleged killing of 16 Afghan civilians by an American soldier have raised questions about the mission and the presidential campaign. Major Garrett is congressional correspondent for the National Journal.
Can a Viral Video Change the World? ()
Kony 2012 went online just a week ago, and it's already chalked up 76 million views on You Tube, raising more than $10 million. Produced by a group called Invisible Children, it claims that widespread "awareness" can stop brutal Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony and his "Lord's Resistance Army" from kidnapping tens of thousands of children and turning them into soldiers, to murder their parents and other civilians and create havoc with no political purpose. Millions of young viewers are now focused on Central Africa, but some experts call it the wrong message at the wrong time. Why is Kony 2012 so appealing? How did it get so big so fast? Why do critics call "awareness campaigns" a form of "slacktivism?"
- J. Peter Pham: Atlantic Council
- Bim Ayandele: WInner and Associates
- Mikki Halpin: freelance journalist and author, @mikkipedia
- Morley Winograd: University of Southern California, @MikeandMorley
What Can Presidents Do about High Gas Prices? ()
Despite improvements in employment and the economy, President Obama's poll ratings are slipping again. Is it the increasing cost of gasoline? Gas prices can make a big difference in presidential campaigns. Just ask Jimmy Carter. As prices soar toward $4 a gallon, Newt Gingrich claims he can bring them down to $2.50. How much power does the President have over the price at the pump? Steven Mufson reports on energy for the Washington Post.
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