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Bono, or the pop star who became human rights leader

Leader of the Irish rock band U2 and personally committed to the development of poor countries.

Irishman Paul David Hewson, born May 10, 1960 in Dublin (to a protestant mother and catholic father): for that reason he has claimed “to understand” intimately the injustices derived from the clash between cultures and religions or the mere intolerance toward “the other”), he is known everywhere as Bono, lead singer of the rock band U2.

Without renouncing his arrogant manner or the loud sunglasses that have become his trademark, the singer can’t be branded frivolous, ignorant or lacking a conscious like so many of his fellow musicians and celebrities in general.

One thing is aesthetics and another is personal attitude:  Bono realized the power of his public image, having become the recognizable face of one of the most respected rock bands in the world, capable of a miracle like uniting parents and children with the same concert, without it being religious.

Since the nineties, Bono has been involved in campaigns in favor of the cancellation of the external debt of developing nations.

He has explained his ideas in places like the White House, the World Economic Forum of Davos, Downing Street or Porto Alegre, where he has talked with the most influential politicians and businessmen in the world.

Married to the businesswoman Ali Hewson (the driving force behind the fair trade clothing line Edun Apparel together with designer Rogan Gregory), he uses his public image to support the campaigns of organizations like Amnesty International and Greenpeace, among others.

In 2002, the singer founded DATA, an organization that studies and publicizes the non-paymentable debts of the African continent and the unjust rules that at present govern the world of commerce and, according to the organization, are usually ignored by the “consumers” of rich countries.

In December of 2005, Bono was named person of the year by Time magazine, an honor shared (on the magazine’s cover) with the computer businessman and philanthropist Bill Gates and his wife, Melinda Gates.  According to an article published in the same magazine, Bono is one of the 100 most influential people of our time.  He has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003, 2005 and 2006.