Why Bono should win the Nobel Peace Prize
The rock star's environmental activism and work in Africa make him a serious contender.
Say what you will about the songs of U2, but its lead singer Bono can claim adoring fans even outside the music industry.
For years, the 55-year-old Irishman has been spending much of his time off-stage trying to solve the world's problems. As far back as the early 1980s, the rock star was using his fame to help the impoverished in Africa. In 2005, he appeared on the cover of Time magazine with Bill and Melinda Gates as they were crowned the "Persons of the Year" for their extensive philanthropic work.
He's been granted knighthood, and he regularly meets with presidents to discuss issues of global import. Many in the humanitarian community feel that this is the year the pop icon might be recognized for his tireless work on behalf of others by receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.
With the Nobel Laureates being announced later this month, we round up three reasons we think Bono might finally get his due.
He wants to end extreme poverty
Bono was inspired by Nobel Peace Prize winner Nelson Mandela to take up the cause of extreme poverty around the world, but especially in Africa. "I am not really motivated by charity as much as I am motivated by justice," Bono said. His goal is both ambitious and admirable: He wants to end extreme poverty by 2030. "I’ve been fighting with the world most of my life, and I’ve learned that change mostly comes slowly and incrementally. But sometimes, when a situation demands it, we think big, act audaciously, and we get it right – or at least partly right, which is no small thing."
He's an environmental activist
Planetary concerns have long been top of mind for Bono. One recent example happened this summer when he traveled to Rwanda to help open a solar field that will harness the power of the sun for decades. Yosef Abramowitz, CEO of the Israel-based Energiya Global Capital who appeared with Bono at the ribbon-cutting, told From the Grapevine that he's rooting for Bono to receive the Nobel. "Bono has been one of the leading and consistent voices for sane Western policies to advance Africa's social and economic growth, from massive debt relief to sponsoring the Electrify Africa Act now being heard in Congress," he said. "He has bettered the lives of millions by being an informed advocate and positive visionary."
He co-founded The One Campaign
Bono helped launch the non-partisan international advocacy organization that launched more than a decade ago. The rock star continues to be more than just a public face for the group, whose work spreads the vast spectrum of global issues including eliminating poverty and preventable diseases to helping our planet become more sustainable. More recently, The One Campaign teamed up with business leaders from Facebook and Wikipedia to call on world leaders to make universal Internet access a reality by 2020.
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