Another year, another “special” Africa issue. For today, it’s Canada’s Globe and Mail, guest edited by the OGs of Team Save Africa, Bono and Bob Geldof. In their first order of business, B&B answered the very tough question: who speaks for Africa? (The Globe and Mail had invited readers to send in questions.) Why, asked one reader, does it take two white men to discuss the positive things that are happening in Africa? Why, indeed?
Well I don’t know, because they don’t actually answer the question. Note that part of the impetus for this issue was to highlight “the Africa you don’t know.” B&B, of course, only go on about the Africa they want us to know, the poor one that cannot function without their intervention. And, yes, they get that they’re “annoying,” says Bob. And? Bono, for his part, takes it a bit further. He “doesn’t see color,” he says. He “forgets,” you see (must be nice). Perhaps what he doesn’t see is that there are others more qualified than he to do this job. Not many, of course, come endorsed by both Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu. Bono does, he reminds us. That Bono—the one thing he never forgets is to namedrop.
Thankfully, B&B aren’t the only ones in charge today. The all-around awesome Ory Okolloh is serving as digital guest editor, which means she’s running globeandmail.com’s world site today. For this, I’ll gladly put up with B&B.