I am a fan of Bono. Well, all of U2, really. But one of the things that I admire about Bono is his passion for saving the people of Africa. Some may roll their eyes at this Rock Star/Activist, but I think that Bono is a man who understands that he has a unique ability to talk to the people in power - the ones who can do something about the pain of the African people - people from Strom Thurmond to George Bush to Pope John Paul II.
I recently found a video at the TEDTalks website recorded in 2005 when Bono received a TEDPrize award from the group. He speaks eloquently about the challenges facing Africa and how NOW is the time to solve this crisis. There are two quotes that I find particularly inspiring:
"Idealism detached from action is just a dream, but idealism allied with pragmatism, with rolling up your sleeves and making the world bend a bit, is very exciting, is very real, is very strong and very present in a crowd like you."
"There are moments in history when civilization redefines itself. We believe this is one. We believe this could be the time when the world finally decides that the wanton loss of life in Africa is no longer acceptable. This could be the time when we finally get serious about changing the future for most people who live on planet Earth."
I believe that these two ideas are also important for the fight against global warming. Climate change will most effect the poorest people - the people who do not have the resources to deal with the coming changes. As low lying coastal areas are flooded, as prolonged droughts increase, as famines linger - the poor people in Africa and other parts of the world will be the worst affected.
The tide of public opinion is turning. The political will is growing. Like Bono, I believe that we can make a difference. We can redefine ourselves to meet the challenges of helping the world's poor and combating climate change.
Click here to view the video on the TEDTalks website.