Activist to Bono: Retire!

Bono seeing red

A fella from Chicago is demanding that Bono retire:

“Bono’s philanthropy efforts are self-righteous, ineffective, & counter-productive;… The grassroots leaders of the global fight against AIDS didn’t ask for Bono to be their frontman. Its time for Bono to step down. We’ll all pledge donations to the Global Fund, but no pledges are collected until Bono retires from public life.”

So far this campaign has raised $1,002, which is nearly equal to the amount of money Bono raises scratching his butt. Although, the money will not actually be donated unless Bono does retire. Go ahead and donate a Gazillion-bazillion dollars because chances are you’ll never have to pay.

The main target of the campaign is not Bono, it’s the RED campaign. Bono is the angle to get people talking about it. I for one don’t want Bono to retire. Sure he’s got a big ego, but he’s got an even bigger fan base that he educates about poverty whether they like it or not. Plus, who doesn’t love U2?

It is almost always annoying when celebrities confuse their worldwide fame for being a worldwide expert. I’ve read that even the other members of U2 get fed up with Bono’s rants. But in my eyes, talking about poverty and AIDS is better than not. You gotta respect when someone tries to use their fame to do good. An argument can be made that his intentions are self-serving, but in that regard are there any true acts of charity?

I’ve planned from the beginning to donate a portion of my earnings from “Where am I Wearing? to organizations that work with garment workers, but I have thought better of it. I don’t want to be accused of using this as a marketing angle to sell more books. But even if I did include such a note, what’s wrong with that? Isn’t that a win-win for both charity and author?

I will be donating, but I won’t be shouting it from the rooftops. Unless you consider this post shouting and this blog a rooftop and, in that case, feel free to criticize my charity. I can take it.

As for the RED campaign, it probably does need to be looked at if, in fact, they have spent $40 million more on marketing than it raised from selling RED products. But what is the value of raising awareness? Maybe the message funded by the $40 million discrepancy has reached 40 million people who are now more aware about AIDS in Africa or poverty in general. What’s that worth?

Read the RED manifesto: , browse their products, or if you think it’s all a bunch of hooey donate to the “Bono Retire” fund.

Decide for yourself.

On a different note, The Point is pretty cool site. You should check it out.

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