John Lennon's Killer: Why We Make Stars From Monsters (Guest Blog)

John Lennon's Killer: Why We Make Stars From Monsters (Guest Blog)

Whether it's the Wolf of Wall Street or Woody — sociopaths and psychopaths sell

I noticed that in the Beatles 50th Anniversary afterglow, Barbara Walters and the American Broadcasting Network has decided to again broadcast the carnal visage of the man that murdered our future.

You may find that introductory sentence debatable — but what is not up for argument is the late John Lennon's impact on popular culture during his productive years. However, this is not a blog about a Beatle. This is about one woman's blood lust for ratings and a network that enables hate crimes by promoting monsters and proselytizing their story in between commercials for the corporate culture that is poisoning children. There's so much wrong in that sentence, not withstanding its run-on component. They did it in 2009, and they are planning to re-run a portion of it again. I'll be more specific.

Interviewing Lennon's killer might be a gig that a journalist would not pass up. As a respected interviewer, Barbara Walters has interviewed the good and the bad, the insane and the criminally insane. We love to get into the heads of criminals. Whether it's the Wolf of Wall Street or Woody — sociopaths and psychopaths sell. Their stories are compelling and fascinating on so many levels. How did they get away with it, what motivated them, what did they do with the spoils? It's fodder for everyone from Jerry Springer to Martin Scorsese. The more violent, the better. The more innocent the victim, the quicker we are to roll up our sleeves and sit with our remotes poised and our finger hovering over the rewind button.

I'm like that. Ghandi surrounded by bearded sycophants dressed in gauzy robes pales in comparison to a volley of bullets and the blood pumping evisceration that comes with a good Quentin Tarantino movie. Violence is cool. Blood flows in only two dimensions on the flat screen or big screen. In three dimensions if the budget allows. The cries of someone in their death throes when enhanced sonically against a phalanx of cellos and synthesizers sounds really cool.

Real life is a lot different. In my life, John Lennon was more than a hero. He was the hope of my generation. As flawed as he was as a father, a husband and a human being, his call for peace resonated within me and within millions of others. He made a connection to our minds, and we loved him with our hearts. His sarcasm and rage was the bitterness of the pill that we swallowed in order to get well. He wasn't perfect, but he was ours. His death hit us unaware of what his potential was, and history has proven me out — his absence over the last 30-odd years has been felt. It's been felt not only in popular culture, it's been felt in how we deal with our world, and how the world is dealing with us.

Lennon taught us to have our own voice. Lennon taught us to “imagine no possessions” — even while he drove around in a Bentley. It wasn't a matter of hypocrisy, it was a matter of reality. Lennon said “God is a concept,” and assured us that we were real. He was unapologetic, he was snide, he could wither someone with a look — yet his message was pristine. He came out of hiding, after raising his second child from an infant to pick up the momentum that was lost when he stepped back into privacy, but not obscurity.

And he was cut down.

And the man who did that we now put on television. The man that murdered Lennon in order to become a part of the Beatle's legend is successful in his efforts, and we are paying for it. That's why I will not watch any interview of him — whether it's a snippet on “The View,” or headlining “20/20.”

That's why I will not mention his name.

Let's be real — Barbara Walters nor her network gives two sh–s about what I write, or what you feel. If I had Barbara Walter's ear I could make a great argument why this is so wrong on many levels. I would mount a campaign to boycott their advertisers, but that would only harm those people who depend on a paycheck from the corporations who underwrite this lunacy. Lennon would never go for that. In my mind, Lennon would look down his nose through those wire frame lenses and borrow a line from Paul McCartney. “Let it be.”

Maybe not.

Our world is so sick, so sick. The value that this industry puts on money and ratings is a symptom of mass dementia. The Beatles are trending, let's throw in everything that is connected, even the man who silenced the group chemistry that enabled the art that we all vibrated to. We have forgotten what we have learned, we have forgotten what “they” have taught us. We have turned away from “flower power” and “give peace a chance,” and instead we flock to the auto-tuned voices of demented souls who piss on society, destroy property and murder innocence.

They perform with contracts that demand French champagne, no green M&M's, room temperature Evian water and sprays of flowers (all white for Miss Lopez — no exceptions). The Beatles had one demand in their contracts. They would not perform to a segregated crowd.

I'll leave you with one of my favorite quotes from John Lennon.

“We're all God, you know. I mean, Christ said, the kingdom of heaven is within you. And that's what it means, you know. And the Indians say that and the Zen people say that. It's a basic thing of religion. We're all God. I'm not a God or the God, not the God. But we're all God and we're all potentially divine and potentially evil. We all have everything within us. And the kingdom of heaven is nigh and within us, you know. And if you look hard enough you see it.”

His voice has been silenced. Not ours.

  • Kelly Miller

    Oh Richard. I firmly believe that BW has every right to interview who ever she wants to, freedom of the “press” and all. I will NOT be watching it. I try not to hate. I try to “dislike” I do hate this monster. I wonder how many younger people would have benefited by Lennon's words, beliefs and lessons. I believe as you do that it would be a better world if Lennon was still around. Peace and love to you my friend. Imagine.

  • David Perkins

    Well said, thank you. But, the sad truth remains that sex and violence sells big time on TV and in cinema, and there's no apparent cure for any of it. I was 12 years old when I watched the fab four on The Ed Sullivan Show 50 years ago. Years later, I cried like a baby when John Lennon was murdered. Most in my generation did the same. And yet, I never missed an episode of ‘Dexter’ or ‘The Shield’ or other shows that (largely) celebrated violence and/or corruption. I have no interest in Barbara Walters’ interview, and I regularly skip retrospectives on the Kennedy/MLK assassinations and 9-11. Am I a hypocrite? Have I lost my way? Where is the line, and how do I know if I've crossed it?

  • Miles Simon

    (from the gospel of thomas) Jesus said, “If those who lead you say to you, ‘See, the kingdom is in the sky,’ then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, ‘It is in the sea,’ then the fish will precede you. Rather, the kingdom is inside of you, and it is outside of you. When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty.”

    Great article cuzzo, your affection and admiration for the beatles has always been moving.

    “I say in speeches that a plausible mission of artists is to make people appreciate being alive at least a little bit. I am then asked if I know of any artists who pulled that off. I reply, ‘The Beatles did.'” – Vonnegut

  • jigzaw

    Seriously comparing Woody Allen to Lennon's murderer? You're just as guilty of sensationalism as BW.

    • Richard Stellar

      Epic fail on reading comprehension.

      • jigzaw

        Nope, I'm fully aware that the tagline was just nonsense as an excuse for alliteration.

  • Guest323

    The question should really be “Why do we make HollyBloggers from monsters?”