“You see, I grew up in Ireland, when Ireland was divided along religious lines, sectarian lines. Young people like me were parched for the vision that poured out of the pulpits of black America and the vision of a black reverend from Atlanta… A man who refused to hate because he knew love would do a better job…
We need the community that taught the world about civil rights to teach it something about human rights. I’m talking about the right to live like a human. The right to live, period…
This is not about charity. This is about justice. It’s about justice and equality…
True religion will not let us fall asleep in the comfort of our freedom. Love thy neighbor is not a piece of advice; it’s a command…
Where you live should not decide whether you live or whether you die…
Whatever thoughts we have about God, who he is or even if God exists, most will agree that God has a special place for the poor. The poor are where God lives. God is in the slums, in the cardboard boxes where the poor play house. God is where the opportunity is lost and lives are shattered. God is with the mother who has infected her child with the virus that will take both their lives. God is under the rubble in the cries we hear during war time. God, my friends, is with the poor. And God is with us, if we are with them.
This is not a burden; this is an adventure! Don’t let anyone tell you it cannot be done. We can be the generation that ends extreme poverty.”
These are selections from Bono’s acceptance speech upon receiving the Chairman’s Award at the 38th NAACP Image Awards, on March 2, 2007.
Paul David Hewson (born 10 May 1960), known by his stage name Bono, is an Irish singer-songwriter, musician, businessman, and philanthropist. He is best recognized as the frontman of the Dublin-based rock band U2.
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