By now you have all probably heard of Jason Russell's tragic, public breakdown. If you have not, here is a statement of the facts that are currently available and the statements of his family and the CEO of Invisible Children: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/03/jason-russell-kony-hospitalized-focused-on-getting-better.html
The unprecedented success of the viral video KONY 2012 elevated Jason's public profile to a scary and untenable place. Everyone seemed to be taking potshots at him and IC's efforts. It is hard to imagine how any human being could maintain themselves in the face of such ruthless and vitriolic criticism.
Louis Moreno Ocampo, the Chief Prosecutor of the U.N.'s International Criminal Court, and Nicholas Kristoff, the NY Times Pulitzer Prize winning journalist, whose voice was the first and has been the most consistent to end the genocide in Sudan.
Those who mounted the loudest and most vicious criticisms are those with vested interests in the status quo- humanitarian organizations (who often compete instead of cooperate), foreign policy 'think tanks' (who were content to do nothing during all of the years that Kony was abducting children), and of course all of the others in the 'blogosphere' who never took the time to learn about Uganda or IC's history and mission. And most of all, those who never made a personal effort to end any of the suffering caused by Kony.
So it broke Jason down. And he now has a very important life lesson to learn. He thought that Kony was the enemy. Now he has learned, in the most painful and personal way possible, that it is all of the so called 'good people': those who support the status quo, who are willing to live in a world where genocides just go on and on, and who throw rocks at those who are willing to flip the equation and end them. They are the real enemy. And they always have been.
The Kingdom that Jesus came to
announce has been called 'The Up-Side Down Kingdom'. Jesus' values flipped
who is important and what is not. Jason and his fellow activists dared to do
the same thing.
But the powers that be, the 'principalities and dominians' have been put on notice. Good people can inspire other good people to act for the good of all. Even for 'the least of these.'
Now Jason knows what it's like to be broken and humiliated at the hands of those with more 'power'. He has joined the ranks of his invisible children. I hope that some day he can understand that this is a blessing.
For now let us pray
for him, and his family. We need him to be healed because he is now the
leader of something historic: millions of people all over the planet who are
dedicated to ending the suffering of
Jason- get better!
Lucy Strausbaugh, M.S., LCPC
March 17. 2012