Celebrity very rarely translates to wisdom. Stardom is not often equivalent to honorable. But sometimes, on rare occasions, there’s a convergence of those descriptions. Bono, the front man of the legendary band U-2, may just be the best representation of that reality.
Remember it was Bono who, after Trump’s victory in November, decided to delay release of U2’s second album of their Innocence and Experience Tour. But not as a temper tantrum or protest against American voters who chose a man for president that the singer didn’t personally support. But as a sign of humility:
I opposed Trump while all the time understanding that many of the people who support him are the kind of people I grew up with, and can see myself in to this day. In my head at least the election result demanded I ask myself several questions: Am I missing something here? Am I out of touch with American values? Am I out of touch with the American people?
It’s clear a giant constituency in the country felt ignored or patronized … they are fearful of the future, as are a growing number of Europeans. I understand and respect that, and I want to try and understand those fears.
Rather than preaching at or lecturing Americans through his “art,” Bono decided to listen and think – something we all could afford to do more often.
The renowned singer was up to more of this class and dignity last night at yet another packed venue. Performing at FedExField, home to the NFL’s Washington Redskins, Bono noted the recent attempted mass assassinations that took place just 16 miles away in Alexandria last week.
That would have been a potentially surprising decision given that while the crowd included notable conservatives like Senator Ted Cruz, Mary Katherine Ham, and Mollie Hemingway, it’s location and proximity to the nation’s capital undoubtedly meant the audience was almost certainly left-leaning. But demonstrating another admirable and praiseworthy trait, Bono always seems to put common humanity above all manmade divisions. He grabbed the microphone and shouted:
“You’ve been through some troubling days with the shooting in Alexandria. We are so grateful that Congressman Scalise and his comrades made it through. So grateful. We hold them up as love holds us all up.”
It wasn’t necessary. It wasn’t expected. It was Bono. And it was admirable.