As with the case of Kony, what to do about your next smartphone is muddy. Buy a new phone and you’re contributing money to civil war in Africa and reprehensible working conditions in China. Don’t buy one and people in far off lands lose their jobs. Which option is more ethical? Which option shows more appreciation for the world’s needy?
The more you read, the more you realize everything is a gray area. Vegetarianism is good for the environment, but studies also show that a diet including a little bit of meat might be more efficient when it comes to land usage. Hybrid cars may be wasting resources that could be used to develop far more smart and sustainable vehicle alternatives. Fast food is a staple for millions of obese Americans, and yet legislating how consumers can buy unhealthy food seems too Orwellian. It’s the double-edged sword of living in a time of unprecedented access to information: You get to form opinions about a lot of things, but the minute you think you’ve got the right answer, some new piece of knowledge comes along and decimates everything you believed previously.
Joseph Kony and the Moral Ambiguity of the Modern World
The backlash against the backlash against the backlash. The film everyone’s talking about reminds us that hardly anything is black and white anymore.
Who is a person interested in making the world better supposed to believe: the do-gooders, or the naysayers attempting to do good by exposing the do-gooders as frauds? It’s a difficult question, not to mention an increasingly relevant one. Kony 2012 and the dialogue it’s created can symbolize a variety of different things, from neo-colonialism to the power of social media. But in their immediate wake, what they seem to most starkly represent is the dizzying moral ambiguity of the modern world, and the frustration to which that ambiguity can lead.
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