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San Diego, California – 33-year-old Jason Russell, co-founder of Invisible Children, Inc. and owner of the face most-pictured in the 30-minute “Kony 2012” viral Internet meme, has been detained by police in San Diego for allegedly masturbating under the influence of something mind-altering, vandalizing cars, beating his fists on the sidewalk, and disrupting traffic, all while spewing incoherent nonsense from his surfer-boy-looking mouth.

Police arrived on this bizarre scene after they’d received several reports of a male individual in a Pacific Beach neighborhood who had removed his underwear and was “perhaps masturbating.”  His underwear was back on before police arrived, incidentally.  Mr. Russell was detained and taken to a mental health facility for evaluation.  Russell’s camp is explaining the incident away by stating that he was “suffering from exhaustion, dehydration and malnutrition in the wake of the emotional toll of the media storm around Kony 2012.”  As far as I can tell, no charges have been filed, except by those of us who are shaking our heads a bit.

Jason Russell, in case you didn’t know, co-founded the “Invisible Children” campaign (also known as IC) in 2004 to bring about the arrest of Jonathan Kony, leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) which spent years terrorizing the Ugandan people.  Kony is accused of abducting as many as 30,000 Ugandan children, turning the boys into soldiers, and making the girls serve as porters and/or sex slaves.  The goal of Russell’s organization is to raise awareness and spur worldwide interest in bringing Kony to justice.  The Kony 2012 film is the culmination of years of IC’s efforts. 

Russell is the son of the founders of the Christian Youth Theater, a USC film school graduate, an evangelical Christian, father to two children, and husband to Danica Russell, with whom he says he’d like to have nine more children (not a misprint).  He describes Danica as his best friend for over 23 years.

Critics of Russell’s plight have leveled a number of charges against the campaign.  Some have pointed out that the LRA has flat-out left Uganda, seeking refuge for their shrinking membership (they’re said to currently have only between 200 and 300 soldiers) in more interior parts of the African continent.  They are seen by many as “not a threat” to the stability of the region and are reportedly now relegated to 5-to-6 person raids of villages, searching only for food.  Others criticize the tactics of the Russell’s organization, which center around raising awareness and sustaining itself rather than providing direct aid.

Invisible Children, Inc. has affected some change, however, such as convincing American government officials to place roughly 100 advisors in Uganda to aid the Ugandan army in finding Kony.  However, as many will point out, the Ugandan army is poorly equipped, poorly trained, and has an abysmal human rights record with the civilian population of the country.  To add to the difficulty, Kony’s skill at hiding himself and his relatively small army in the dense African forests is formidable to say the least.

To make matters even worse for the cause, many Ugandans who have seen the film are taking strong exception to its message:

“There was a strong sense from the audience that the video was insensitive to African and Ugandan audiences, and that it did not accurately portray the conflict or the victims,” Victor Ochen of the African Youth Initiative Network, said in a statement. “In particular, viewers were outraged by the KONY 2012 campaign’s strategy to make Kony famous and their marketing of items with his image.”

Knowing what I know about Russell’s background and the fact that what he’s made his life’s work is now seen by many as a dead issue, I wouldn’t be terribly surprised if he went a little whackier than he already was.  However, I have a strong suspicion that his recent display of public indecency is probably only a stunt to further bolster awareness of his weakening cause.

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Comments


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  • sherrdbw

    “suffering from exhaustion, dehydration and malnutrition”
    Is that what they call drugging and masturbating now?
     

  • Patr1ckBateman

    I thought of James Ellroy straight away when I read this. The following is just a joke, I am not serious…
    If this was a James Ellroy book, this would have been the work of the FBI. Some agents would have drugged him and left him in the street to ruin his reputation. The reason being, the US has some kind of financial interest in letting Kony go free.

  • lovesin

    Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, anyone?????

  • Athena

    Great write-up.  

  • http://tothechest.com Pete Puma

    Thank you, chickie…and thanks for friending me Facebook…I appreciate it and never thanked you.

  • malq

    I must be out of touch. I have never heard of this guy,  his Kony 2012, 
    or his organizations. To me he is just another jerkoff.

  • Athena

    Although I definitely deserve it, I never expect to get thanked for friend requests.  So, no… thank you

    But on a serious note, it’s nice to read an article that does not regard Russell as some modern day saint with an omnipresent understanding of the Ugandan situation.  

  • http://tothechest.com Pete Puma

    I’d never heard of him until this afternoon when Jaded sent me the link.  My wife was watching the video last night, but I had no idea what it was or any desire to find out.

  • http://tothechest.com Pete Puma

    Well, I feel bad for the guy.  When he adopted the cause, it was a real, real problem.  Now, there are much bigger issues in the region, it seems. I’m not saying Kony doesn’t deserve to be strung by the balls and sword-whipped for past transgressions, but he just doesn’t pose the threat he once did…at least that’s the conclusion I was forced to reach after reading many, many articles on the topic.

  • malq

     Wait, I thought your wife was Butch from TTC..

  • Wildheart

    TMZ just posted video….it’s only 12 seconds and his back is to the camera:  http://www.tmz.com/2012/03/16/jason-russell-video-naked-meltdown-kony/

  • Chinchillazilla

    Just based on his picture, I feel like I could have predicted he’d do something like this. Nobody is that friggin’ happy.

  • onlyme356

    Very, very strange. What I find questionable is the Prime Minister of Uganda releasing his own youtube response video to the Kony 2012 video just one day after this happened. Sounded like they were doing some major damage control. If the Ugandan government and its nation is so stable, why would they even feel the need to defend themselves against a youtube video? They obviously feared Jason Russell’s work and I wouldn’t put it past them if they had anything to do with this. How you ask? Through threats, fear, drugs, who knows. Call me a conspiracy theorist, whatever I don’t care. It’s all too bizarre. The fact that the US government had actually sent troops out to Uganda because the movement had gained some relevance says a lot.

  • http://tothechest.com Pete Puma

    I get that a lot.

  • Athena

    I get that.  It’s just that I live in a really, really, REALLY “progressive” place with a lot of very progressive friends and, since this hit the scene, it’s showed up half a billion times in my FB feed, I’ve been seeing it on cars, hearing about it in grocery store lines… and it’s nice to hear a more objective take on the issue.

  • MCat80

    As soon as this story broke in the MSM all I could think of is “bath salts”  Doesn’t this sort of bat-shit-crazy quasi nakedness almost always turn out to beth salt induced?

  • http://www.dreamindemon.com Jaded

    ….or PCP.

  • http://profiles.google.com/coldlogic HAL 9000

    I’ve thought that several times about bath-salts, they’re today’s angel. I remember being a kid hearing about dudes who smoked those rocks and went batshit crazy and those same stories now are from the salts. Its like PCP is a Palm Pilot, so last week. So untrendy next to the sexy iSalts.

    Check this link out: http://www.tmz.com/2012/03/16/jason-russell-video-naked-meltdown-kony/

    It wasn’t a bong rip for sure, and people do that drunk but never that coordinated. Gotta be salts or a pretty pure rock.

  • http://profiles.google.com/coldlogic HAL 9000

    Hah, shoulda read your post.

  • malq

     I have not heard anything about it on the Rush Limbaugh hour….

  • malq

     I don’t know about you womenz  hungry vaginas, but after after a bathsalt binge and a few PCP rips, I’m gonna pass on giving anyone the high hard one for a few hours. So the next time we really party, you are on your own.

  • Wicked Smilee

    Finally a crazier idiot in Pacific Beach, than my X….  (although when the story broke, I totally thought it was him – again!)

  • JGo555

    Stories of masturbation and @petepuma:disqus go together like low self esteem & daddy issues go with strippers.

  • JGo555

    When I am tired as fuck, hungry & thirsty all I think about is finding my vibrator & putting on a show for unknown people.

    If you got it, flog it.

    Is his dick so big he has to slam his junk into the pavement to get a sensation throughout the shaft!?

    Is he “ursurping his dictator”?

    The curves of the street and the sidewalk make me horny & act like a bobono too, Russell. I’m sure daddy’s gonna punish your All American looking ass for this, even if you are an adult.

  • JGo555

    YOU!? HAVE A WIFE!???

    What about To The Chest!?

  • JGo555

    I don’t know but something’s off in the pic. His right eye is a bit smaller & it just hits me as if he was all crazy on the inside but can hide it…

  • http://tothechest.com Pete Puma

    The ultra-realism of To The Chest fools a lot of people.

  • http://www.krashthrills.wordpress.com/ Anthony Mandich

    I’m not going to watch his video.  To be honest, I just don’t need any more hot button issues in my already crowded brain.  Uganda is just going to have to deal with this one themselves.  They are big kids.  They can handle it.  I’m sorry but that’s all I got.

  • Nemesis

    I dunno…He pissed off some pretty important people and had A LOT of backlash. I almost wonder if someone slipped him a “Micky”.

  • Jemimabean

    The problem is that most Central African countries, post- French colonialism, do not have the necessary power of infrastructure to fix it by themselves, and the result is that the problem is much, much bigger than we realise. My husband works in the Congo for about a week out of every month and unless you live and work on an outsider’s mine or farm, you’re fucked. There is literally NOTHING left- no wildlife, since the people native to the region are so desperate that they are forced to kill and eat everything and anything, it’s a battle to sustain any kind of crops, and people are dropping dead from hunger and disease. And what do we South Africans do? Well, fuckall, since our defence force is a joke and we’re too busy trying to stem the flow of refugees lucky enough to make it here from that area and Zimbabwe. There simply aren’t enough fossil fuels in the area to generate any kind of real interest (:P) and the entire region is governed by people who are so consumed by their superstitions and religious bullshit that it wouldn’t make any difference anyway.

  • Sam

    I don’t ‘like’ the situation, i ‘like’ your insights into a part of the world we don’t really hear enough about. I agree that’s probably to do with the lack of anything valuable like fossil fuels that could be pilfered away, sadly.

  • Sam

    I just can’t stop imagining this guy with no pants on sit-shuffling his butt on the pavement like a cat in heat. Sincere thanks for that image, this is going to keep me going all day.

  • Jemimabean

    This just in- oil discovered underneath Robert Mugabe’s compound in Zimbabwe! But you can only access it by blowing the whole place up… 😀

  • Sam

    HA! If only Bush was still in the White House, we might even have been able to convince him of that one! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Valerie-Morrison/798963695 Valerie Morrison

    I used to be very passionate about Central Africa. “We have to help them! Why isn’t anyone paying attention?! They need us!” and so on. I’d read about the child soldiers, the genocides, the way we just handed them their countries back and said “You got this, bye!”
    Then I read a book about the Congo (Blood River by Tim Butcher) and it shattered every little bit of idealism I had. You can’t help people who are not willing to help themselves.
    Now everyone’s talking about Kony like that’s going to change something- where was all this support 25 years ago? Action is better than REaction, that is to say, why can’t people focus on PREVENTING crises? Why does it have to be so far down the line?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XKMAEMPVJ5T2Y35HKYTNG7I6SY Cedric

    This guy has mental problems – the booze,hard on and public meat spanking are just side issues.

  • MidwestDiva

    I think he is way cute!

  • Jemimabean

    Exactly my point- unfortunately, the vast majority of African countries don’t have the infrastructure to deal with huge problems like this. Why is it always up to foreigners to have to risk life and limb to drag them out of the shit? I’m not saying it’s not a horrific situation, of course it is, but there also comes a point when you need to step back and NOT put the lives of your own innocent people at risk. Zim, for example, had everything perfectly in place to survive rather well (what with it being one of the planet’s richest agricultural countries when I was a kid,) and systematically destroyed every single system that worked.  The education policies in South Africa are being changed AGAIN- for the third or fourth time in fifteen years, and we wonder why we have a sub- standard matriculation rate. The ideologies that may have sucked during colonialism certainly needed to change, but ideologies and systems that help a nation survive educationally and financially shouldn’t be compromised. I think that the big difference is that Zim and SA will never sit back and go “Oh, fuck, we may need a bit of direction here.” But they aren’t adverse to asking for handouts form wealthier nations.

  • Jemimabean

    Besides, Central Africa have other problems to deal with. Like this fellow, and the unfortunate girl he will be whisking away for a wild evening at the movies.
    http://youtu.be/HmJbJs-9ST0

  • annagg

    Rush is on for 3 hours.

  • MCat80

    Wow.  Just Wow. He didn’t look very exhausted to me….

  • nomorepolitix

    So wait a minute: the LRA/Kony issue is a dead issue, but he’s wanted by some world court and still not been captured? Hmmm. Sounds like someone (with good Xtian values and a sweet sweet nekkid ass) should make a video that shows what a douche the leader was and put on some eyewitnesses that were affected and then have it go viral to make the world a much smaller hiding place for him…oh wait. That’s what they did. Nevermind.

  • malq

     Really?? He is so fascinating it seems like one!