Special thanks to you contributors.

 It was twenty years ago today...

From: hal@wcta.net

Hey bc

I was 16 in 1980, I can remember being in the basement of our home in
Wolf Point Mt.  I was watching tv, I have no recollection of what was
on when the news of John Lennon being shot was announced.

But I can remember wishing my father would leave the room because
I knew it didn't mean jack shit to him,  but I felt numb.
I remember all the coverage of the vigils and the feeling so alone with my sadness.
Maybe that is one of the reasons to this day, I don't care for the holidays.

I know a lot of people smarter than myself sometimes think its a lame song but last
New Years Eve I played Imagine right before midnight and then Beautiful Little Boy.

Al Knutson

From:  ifness@earthlink.net

I understand that a lot of people heard the news from Howard Cosell
while watching Monday Night Football. I'm glad I wasn't one of them.

I was listening to a Fine Rock station, one whose disc jockeys prepared the
playlists, not some research group. The news was delivered soberly, and in a
short announcement that left no doubt as to the finality of the situation.

They then, of course, began playing his songs.
The first one was #9 Dream. I thought that was very appropriate,
and remain quite grateful that I had the radio on and not the TV.
The song "Watching the Wheels" showed that John had the talent to keep on
writing great songs for as long as he lived.

We have missed out on a lot of great songs that never got written.
God bless the Gun!

Bruce Yurgil

PLAYBOY: Aside from the millions you've been offered for a reunion concert, how did you feel
about producer Lorne Michaels' generous offer of $3200 for appearing together on
"Saturday Night Live" a few years ago?

LENNON: Oh, yeah. Paul and I were together watching that show.
He was visiting us at our place in the Dakota. We were watching it
and almost went down to the studio, just as a gag.
We nearly got into a cab, but we were actually too tired.

PLAYBOY: How did you and Paul happen to be watching TV together?

LENNON: That was a period when Paul just kept turning up at our door with a guitar.
I would let him in, but finally I said to him, "Please call before you come over. It's not 1956 and
turning up at the door isn't the same anymore. You know, just give me a ring." He was upset by that,
but I didn't mean it badly. I just meant that I was taking care of a baby all day and some guy turns up
at the door. . . . But, anyway, back on that night, he and Linda walked in and he and I were just
sitting there, watching the show, and we went, "Ha-ha, wouldn't it be funny if we went down?" but we didn't.

From:   dragon04@ipa.net

Subject:    John Lennon

In 1980, I had been out of the Navy for a while and was about to graduate
from college.  I paid for my college through the GI Bill and through
various combinations of activity scholarships, work-study, part-time jobs ,
the whole student poverty trip.

I was on the debate team at my university and on the day John died, that
evening, I was working in the Debate Office doing what we did ... typing,
mimeographing evidence cards, shooting the breeze with my fellow forensic
warriors when my debate partner Greg came into the office.  Greg was a big
lad, both tall and broad with long red hair and a gentle heart and he was
crying.  Tears streamed down his face.

There were four or five of us there and we all turned toward Greg and when
we saw his face, we knew something was wrong.  He just blurted it out:
"John Lennon's been killed."

Oddly, for me, it was as if the words made no sense.  I mean ... I knew
what all the words meant and knew what they meant in that combination yet
somehow, I couldn't quite, for a full minute, connect the meaning of the
phrase with the reality of it.

John Lennon's been killed.

What the fuck did THAT mean?

I met eyes with everyone in the room and each pair of eyes showed the same
numbness I felt, the same lack of comprehension.  Then Greg laid the real deal on us.

"Somebody shot him."

That made even less sense to me.
Somebody shot him?

Holy shit.

The balls had richoceted around the table a few times but finally one of them slammed home.
John Lennon.



No one said anything for some time until one by one, we left the office and
disappeared into the night.  Maybe he should have written it ...

"All we need is love.

And kevlar."

I don't know but one thing is certain: it was as fucked up a thing as I've
live through for sheer nihilistic nonsense.

RP Wright

 Something by Jon Wiener

 Click  Here

From: ngillen@falcon.tamucc.edu

Subject:   Lennon

I learned of John Lennon's death the same way others did--while watching a Monday
Night Football broadcast. And the bearer of bad tidings was, of course, Howard Cosell.

By December, 1980, it had become a rather obnoxious ritual for Cosell to include at least
one eulogy every Monday night: usually regarding the death of an ABC crew member or
his/her close relations ("It is my sad duty to report the passing away of our long-time
field cameraman Josef Slovotzky who, up until last week, has been with us in every game
from the very inception of our broadcast..." and so forth).  I say "obnoxious" because
Cosell's verbal obituaries had become just another part of the show's embarrassing series
of schtiks--along with Don Meredith's corny renditions of the song "The Party's Over,"
the countless celebrities parading in and out of the broadcast booth, Meredith's countrified
down-home humor as a foil for Cosell's truculant observations.  Frank Gifford was the
play-by- play man; but this was "pre-Kathie Lee" Frank, so at least he was tolerable.

In any case, that night 20 years ago, when Cosell was about to go into his
"we're sorry to announce the death of..." routine, I was about to go to the kitchen for a
fresh glass of iced tea, when suddenly Cosell let us knew early that this was not one of
his run-of-the-mill eulogies, that it involved an important death. I remember sitting poised,
awaiting the announcement of  an assassination--either Carter's or (then) president-elect Reagan's.
I couldn't believe he was informing us of the death of John Lennon.  Quite a shock.

Our local album-oriented FM rock station participated in a mass moment of
silence the following Sunday at precisely 2 pm (CST).  For a full minute, there
was nothing but dead air--a faint hiss.  Somehow that hiss seemed appropriate,
as if someone or something were making an oblique but justifiable commentary
on what had transpired almost a week before.

I don't drink tequila, so a toast with you is out.  And I can't say I'm looking forward to
the upcoming movie-for-TV special on Lennon's life--from "Birth of the Beatles" to "Backbeat",
all films ostensibly about the Beatles have been big disappointments, artistically as well as
commercially.  Even the documentaries like "Imagine" and "The Compleat Beatles" offer
little than just the tiresomely repeated lore and anecdotes and trivia.
It's enough to want to make one turn to a Sex Pistols album, sometimes.
But out of curiosity, I shall take a peek, and see the latest exploitation of a Beatle's life and tragedy.
My surprise at my own cynicism, I think, will force me...


From:  mary-daly@australia.edu


Listen to the first line of I AM THE WALRUS


There's way too much I, Me, Mine these days and not enough We, Our, Us.
Lennon understood that even then.

Mary Daly

PLAYBOY: Most people would have continued to churn out the product. How were you able to see a way out?

LENNON: Most people don't live with Yoko Ono.

PLAYBOY: Which means?

LENNON: Most people don't have a companion who will tell the truth and refuse to live with a bullshit artist,
which I am pretty good at. I can bullshit myself and everybody around.

PLAYBOY: What did she do for you?

LENNON: She showed me the possibility of the alternative. "You don't have to do this."
"I don't? Really? But--but--but--but--but...." Of course, it wasn't that simple and it didn't sink in overnight.
It took constant reinforcement. Walking away is much harder than carrying on. I've done both.
On demand and on schedule, I had turned out records from 1962 to 1975. Walking away seemed like
what the guys go through at 65, when suddenly they're supposed to not exist anymore and they're sent
out of the office [knocks on the desk three times]: "Your life is over. Time for golf."

From:  KReese4096@aol.com

Please allow me to give you a few glimpses of my experience;
Monday night football, Howard Cosell, Shock, Horror, Disbelief, (I'll hate the NFL from now on..)
phone calls to my sister in Arizona, phone calls to my just moved out room mate now in Mass.,
my husband who was at the bar and thought I was over reacting when he got home.
He knew I loved the Beatles, knew I saw them live in Detroit at Olympia Stadium on
September 6, 1964. The next two weeks at work there were a few friends who were also fans.
I brought in my Beatle scrapbook, we played their music, we talked, laughed, cried, laughed,
I'll never forget it.

ON to the future:

Three weeks ago, my second husband and I stopped at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
in Cleveland, Ohio (on our way to visit his Daughter in Washington,D.C.)

The John Lennon Exhibit had just opened. I can't tell you how moving it was.
His report cards as a child, ( he was such a "chatter box") his drawings as a child,
his written words for the songs he wrote, (I started sobbing when I saw his hand written
lyrics to "In My Life" and "Starting Over" it was most painful) .

His eye glasses behind plastic bubbles on a ten foot board. But most chilling; in a column
in the middle floor, with four bubbles on each side, a brown paper bag enclosed in plastic,
with hospital tape, saying these are the belongings of John Lennon.
These were the clothes he was wearing when he was shot to death on December 8, 1980.

Karen R

PLAYBOY: But what about the charge that John Lennon is under Yoko's spell, under her control?

LENNON: Well, that's rubbish, you know. Nobody controls me. I'm uncontrollable.
The only one who controls me is me, and that's just barely possible.

PLAYBOY: Still, many people believe it.

LENNON: Listen, if somebody's gonna impress me, whether it be a Maharishi or a Yoko Ono,
there comes a point when the emperor has no clothes. There comes a point when I will see.
So for all you folks out there who think that I'm having the wool pulled over my eyes,
well, that's an insult to me. Not that you think less of Yoko, because that's your problem.
What I think of her is what counts! Because -- fuck you, brother and sister -- you don't know
what's happening. I'm not here for you. I'm here for me and her and the baby!

From:   P6K6M6@aol.com

I remember more the aftermath of John Lennon being shot.
I was in Bath, in England.
Circus Oz, the great Australian circus, was performing at the  Theatre Royal.
For a week after his death, the whole cast came out at the end of the show and sang "Imagine."

peter millington

From:   jcolwel2@ford.com

I was a freshman at college.
Nobody had TVs in their dorm rooms, and we didn't listen to the radio very much.
I was in Barb Reid's room, and her mom called on the phone.
Barb talked for a minute, hung up and told us.

Someone shot John Lennon.

That's all I remember.

Joseph Colwell

From:  Steven.Bennett@bytesys.com

I was sitting in a hospital waiting room in Atlanta, Ga where
my father was in intensive care after suffering a major heart attack.

The nurse came in to tell us that my dad was in real bad shape
and that they would know more in the morning.

It was then another nurse came in and whispered something into
the first nurse's ear and of course we all thought it was about my dad.
I insisted she tell me what the second nurse said and she looked at me
and started to cry.

My mom saw this and was now convinced that my dad had just died
(he hadn't) and the nurse left the room.  I went out after her and in
the hall she apoligized for upsetting us but the second nurse just told her
that John Lennon had just been killed.

I hugged her and went back to the waiting room and told my mom
that dad was still with us and what had just happened.
By the way, Dad lived for another 18 months.

Steven Bennett

PLAYBOY: Were falling in love with Yoko and wanting to leave the Beatles connected?

LENNON: As I said, I had already begun to want to leave, but when I met Yoko it was like
when you meet your first woman. You leave the guys at the bar. You don't go play football anymore.
You don't go play snooker or billiards. Maybe some guys do it on Friday night or something,
but once I found the woman, the boys became of no interest whatsoever other than being old school friends.
"Those wedding bells are breaking up that old gang of mine." We got married three years later, in 1969.
That was the end of the boys. And it just so happened that the boys were well known and weren't just local
guys at the bar. Everybody got so upset over it. There was a lot of shit thrown at us. A lot of hateful stuff.

ONO: Even now, I just read that Paul said, "I understand that he wants to be with her, but why does he have
to be with her all the time?"

LENNON: Yoko, do you still have to carry that cross? That was years ago.

ONO: No, no, no. He said it recently. I mean, what happened with John is like, I sort of went to bed
with this guy that I liked and suddenly the next morning, I see these three in-laws, standing there.

From:  v.morrison@csuohio.edu

    I found out about Lennon's death the way a lot of people did--by
hearing it from the Monday Night Football crew on ABC. I don't remember
who the third announcer was--probably Al Michaels--but I know for sure
that Don Meredith and Howard Cosell were there.

One of the three men read a bulletin that said that Lennon had been shot.
I knew right then that he was dead--what with Reagan having been elected
president a month earlier, it just seemed there could be no other outcome.

Within seconds they confirmed that Lennon had died.
The announcers said something about how little football meant at a time like this,
but they of course had to keep broadcasting the game.

    A few years earlier, Lennon had visited the press box during a Monday night game,
and had spoken with the announcers.  Cosell recalled this, then spoke movingly about
how friendly and open Lennon had been, how much he had contributed to the world
through his music, and how sick it was that someone had shot him.
To me, that was Cosell's finest moment as a broadcaster.

    I then shut off the game and put on WMMS, at the time Cleveland's
(and arguably the country's) best rock station.  They were announcing
Lennon's death, and soon thereafer began playing nothing but Beatles and
John Lennon records for the rest of the night and through at least all of  Tuesday.

While I had of course been a fan of the Beatles and of Lennon, it was through this
marathon that I got to hear the less-well-known cuts from Revolver, and to realize
how fucking great a record that was.  I would have learned this eventually, and it
pains me to recall that it took Lennon's death for me to learn it the way I did.
Sorry, John.

      Throughout the night I made and received phone calls to and from friends
who cared about the Beatles the way I did.  The guy who was at the time my
best friend had, a few days earlier, moved into an apartment about a mile from mine.

He hadn't yet had a phone installed, and he had no car, but he walked that mile
to my place in the cold Cleveland weather so we could grieve together.
Despite the way Lennon's death seemed to bring people together,
his killing made me feel lonelier than I'd ever felt before or since.

Vern Morrison

From:  csiii@sound.net

Found out from Howard Cosell-Monday Night Football.

Steve Fuller

PLAYBOY: Many people feel that none of the songs Paul has done alone match the songs he did
as a Beatle. Do you honestly feel that any of your songs -- on the Plastic Ono Band records -- will have
the lasting imprint of "Eleanor Rigby" or "Strawberry Fields"?

LENNON: "Imagine," "Love" and those Plastic Ono Band songs stand up to any song that was written
when I was a Beatle. Now, it may take you 20 or 30 years to appreciate that, but the fact is, if you check
those songs out, you will see that it is as good as any fucking stuff that was ever done.

PLAYBOY: It seems as if you're trying to say to the world, "We were just a good band making some
good music," while a lot of the rest of the world is saying, "It wasn't just some good music, it was the best."

LENNON: Well, if it was the best, so what?


LENNON: It can never be again!
Everyone always talks about a good thing coming to an end, as if life was over. But I'll be 40 when
this interview comes out. Paul is 38. Elton John, Bob Dylan  -- we're all relatively young people.
The game isn't over yet. Everyone talks in terms of the last record  or the last Beatle concert
-- but, God willing, there are another 40 years of productivity to go.

From: Tamara Baker

I was a senior in high school in December 1980.

Thanks to my older brother's record collection, I became a hard-core Beatlemaniac
a good decade after it was fashionable.  I even joined a local Beatle fan club,
The Write Thing, where I was the youngest member by about five years.
We even used Beatle slang to one another:  'Fab; and 'Gear' and 'Grotty'.

The 1970s were pretty hellish for John, as I saw them from my perch in Minnesota.
He was constantly being threatened by somebody or other, usually authority figures who
didn't like his long hair, his marrying a 'gook', or his activism on behalf of the oppressed.
I thought he might end up in prison at one point.  But he survived, got his green card,
even patched things up with Yoko after their infamous break-up in 1974.

In December 1980, he had just come out of a five-year self-imposed head-clearing session,
gone into the studio and came out with an album called 'Double Fantasy'.  No, it wasn't as
good as his Beatles stuff, or even his best solo stuff, but it was his first work as a grown-up,
and showed promise for the future.  I was looking forward to hearing more from him.

On December 8, 1980, at around 10:30 pm Central Standard Time,
my mother opened my bedroom door, rousing me from sleep.
(It was a school night, so I was already in bed.)
'I have bad news for you,' she said.
'John Lennon was shot outside his apartment building. It doesn't look good.'

Ever been too shocked by something to act shocked?
I was, that night.
There was no point in hysterics; they wouldn't have done any good, anyway.

So I simply said:  'How many shots?'.
And Mom replied: "Four shots."

And I immediately started to pray for his soul, because I knew that very few
people survived four shots at what was almost certainly very close range.
I then drifted off into a troubled sleep.  It seemed like an omen of incredibly
shitty times to come: first the neofascist Reagan gets elected with the help of
a compliant media, then a lion of the 60's is murdered in cold blood.
I couldn't believe it was a coincidence.

Next day at school, dozens of kids wore black -- and this at a high school
where our local radio station had just been bought by an Atlanta conglomerate
that played nothing but Apartheid-Oriented Rock.  One girl even had black earrings.
Some kids wept openly in the halls.

And everyone had the feeling -- no, the CONVICTION -- that this didn't just 'happen'.
Just like our older brothers and sisters, and our parents, KNEW in 1963 and 1968,
that JFK and MLK and RFK weren't just killed by lone gunmen.

Some years ago, a book came out, called Who Killed John Lennon?
Written by a British journalist, it makes the case that John was rubbed out by the CIA
(which, according to the book, is run by prudish Bible-bangers that make your average
snake-handling Pentecostalist look civilized) because they feared that he could lead the
Left against the Reagan Error.  (John had eased up on the activism during the middle
of the 1970s because a) he wanted a Green Card, and b) he and Yoko were trying
to get custody of Kyoko, Yoko's daughter from a previous marriage.  When he
achieved the first, and found he couldn't achieve the second, all constraints on him were off.)

I don't know if I agree with the author's conclusion, but knowing what I do of the way
the GOP operates (and considering that the CIA is the Bush Crime Family's pet
Government Agency), it wouldn't surprise me one bit.

Here's to you, John Lennon, whereever you are, forever frozen at age 40.
I miss you.
I always will.

Tamara Baker

From: bjbailey@zoomnet.net

That night found me as a 20 year old serviceman in Texas, in my dormatory room,
listening to the local rock station on the radio.  This station's format included a crazy
sense of humor, with frequent Elvis sightings, and stories like "in Major League trades today,

Styx traded their Bass Player for the REO Speedwagon's drummer", stuff like that.
   I had heard "Double Fantasy" the week before, and I hated it.  So, when the announcer
came on and said that John Lennon had been shot outside his apartment, and further details
were pending, I went along with the gag.

"Obviously, by someone who bought his record" I sneered to myself.
  A few minutes later, guys were coming out of their rooms into the hallway,
saying "Have you heard?"  Then, I realized it was TRUE!

  I spent the next month or so deeply greived, but also with a dirty sense of guilt for my tacky comment.
John, I'm sorry for what happened to you that terrible night so long ago.
But, also, I'm sorry for my stupid crack, which has quietly haunted me ever since...

Ken Bailey

PLAYBOY: What about the people of your generation, the ones who feel a certain kind of music
-- and spirit -- died when the Beatles broke up?

LENNON: If they didn't understand the Beatles and the Sixties then, what the fuck could we do for them now?
Do we have to divide the fish and the loaves for the multitudes again?
Do we have to get crucified again?
Do we have to do the walking on water again because a whole pile of dummies didn't see it the first time,
or didn't believe it when they saw it? You know, that's what they're asking: "Get off the cross. I didn't
understand the first bit yet. Can you do that again?"

No way. You can never go home. It doesn't exist.

From:   TJame64938@aol.com

Hey Bartcop,
I was in high school when I heard that John Lennon was murdered. A friend called me and told me.
I didn't think too much about it, because I had a pretty dark outlook on life back then.

I remember once I was driving to a job site with my friend Randy, when "Imagine" was playing on the radio.
Randy, who I almost never talked about music, turned to me and said
"You know, it was a damn shame when that man died."
It was a shame.

Just hearing "A day in the life", or the Christmas song sends shivers down my spine every time.
The man was a genius.


From:  logic@skantech.com

I was 12, riding to school in my sister's car.
At the time I had just recently discovered my father's collection
of Beatles albums and the radio had been playing his recent releases
(which I, the AC/DC and Led Zeppelin listener, thought were awfully
wimpy and why the hell did I want to hear this stuff?).

I loved the White Album, Revolver, and the Magical Mystery Tour
was a guilty secret.   But being 12, I didn't really comprehend what
had happened at first.   That morning the radio station played little
other than the live broadcasts coming  from the crime scene.

The imagined visual of a man sitting on a curb, playing his portable
tape player and weeping is with me to this day.  By the end of the
15 minute car trip, I had absorbed a small part of the profound
sense of loss that was sweeping the nation that day.


PLAYBOY: We heard that you own $60,000,000 worth of dairy cows. Can that be true?

ONO: I don't know. I'm not a calculator. I'm not going by figures. I'm going by excellence of things.

LENNON: Sean and I were away for a weekend and Yoko came over to sell this cow and I was
joking about it. We hadn't seen her for days; she spent all her time on it. But then I read the paper
that said she sold it for a quarter of a million dollars. Only Yoko could sell a cow for that much. [Laughter]

From:    watsmata4u@monmouth.com

The day John Lennon died was and is the day after my birthday.
I can remember waking up with a terrible hangover and hearing
Dave Herman on WNEW-FM in NY talking about "John" being dead.

At first I thought he meant John Bonham, who had died a month earlier.
Then I realized he meant Lennon. Now every year when I wake up
with my birthday hangover, I get reminded of that day.

BTW, you might want to wish my Mom a happy 84th.
Her birthday is on the same day as mine.

From:  Jenyrabit@aol.com

i have worked in restraunts from 1951 untill 75.
so i heard it all i was so sick of country.
then there was elvis we were elvis fans.
then came the beatles lord they were something.
i was taking 4 mos. off from work being p g with my second son
i listened to them 12 hrs a day.
my husband did not like them.but my 3 older kids did.
after my son was born. he would NOT SLEEP WITH OUT THE BEATLES SINGING.
i am 70 yrs old still love them
my children have all the 33 albums.
all 5 have c. p. and read bartcop. com every 2 days.
my favorite site on the net.


From:   vormax@nycap.rr.com

In December 1980 I was a freshman at American University in D.C. A little after
11 p.m. on Dec. 8 my brother called me from New Jersey. He said he'd heard on TV
that John had been shot. I can't remember whether or not he said he had died.
I turned on a local rock station and heard a succession of Beatle tunes. I called the
station and asked him if the block of Beatles had anything to do with Lennon. He said no
and, after I told him what my brother told me, he went to the newswire. He confirmed it.
The station played a couple of non-Beatle songs and then resumed them,
nonstop, for the next day or so.

I called a friend and fellow Beatle fan who was attending college in Pennsylvania.
We had a good cry; it was as if we'd lost a close friend or family member.

I think that the greatest tribute paid John was over the next 24 hours – or
more – when you could turn on just about any radio station, no matter what
the format, and hear nothing but Lennon/Beatles songs. Sometimes it's hard
to believe so much time has passed. Perhaps it's because his presence is
still strong. It's 20 years later and the Beatles are at number one on many
of the charts around the world.


From:  Jon_Bastian@paramount.com

For my generation, John Lennon's assassination is as defining an experience
as is JFK's to baby boomers, and I will never forget the moment I heard the
news. I was a freshman in college, cramming for finals with a friend in his
dorm when his sister called.  His reaction was of the death in the family
variety.  He didn't say much, just listened somberly, finally hung up, then
turned to me with blank and hollow eyes. Then he said it.
"John Lennon's been shot."

     It's one of those unbelievable sentences that sends your heart down
the elevator shaft to the basement and leaves your mouth only capable of
muttering "What?"  One of our own, a musician, a poet, an activist, a
Beatle, for god's sake, and somebody killed him for no reason.
     About half an hour after the phone call, we went down to the official
study break in the dining hall, and it was one of the most chilling events
of my life.  Everyone came for coffee and donuts and nobody said a word.
A room full of several hundred study stressed, hormone drenched college
students in dead silence -- not a sound, not a shout, not a joke.  Just
confused silence, wordless acknowledgements, hushed frustration and faces
wet with tears -- yes, even the jocks.

    One month earlier, Ronald Reagan had been elected to his first term as
President, and many of us knew what was coming -- an attempted reversal of
all the social gains that had been made before.  John Lennon's murder was
only the first shot in a long battle for us, a martyrdom that always seemed
a little too convenient. When Reagan himself ducked the bullets three
months later, many of us wished aloud that the two assassins had switched
places -- and if you've compared photos of Mark David Chapman and John
Hinckley, you'll swear they're brothers or clones or... something...
Factory assembled killers, one designed to hit his target, the other
designed to miss and play up the sympathy points.

     Paranoia? Maybe. Maybe not. Still, the whole thing was too unusual,
too inexplicable, too weird. Something not right, something wrong, a
Spaniard in the works and John Lennon's death was the event that smacked my
young face full on with an idealism-killing reality that lives with me to
this day. There are people who will go to any length to get their way, who
won't play by the rules, who are so threatened by ideas that their only
response is to decimate the messenger. When thwarted, they stomp their
feet, insult their critics and strut around with a sense of entitlement
that is unearned.  They will sell weapons to enemies, rewrite history to
cover their asses -- or murder rock stars who may be able to rally the
other side to action.

     Does this behavior sound familiar?
     My generation was too young for Vietnam and too old for Desert Storm,
but never say we didn't grow up in wartime.  We were -- and still are -- in
the middle of a Civil Cold War, the ideology of hatred, suspicion and greed
versus the ideology of compassion, inclusion and generosity.  John Lennon
had been one of the foremost spokespeople for the side of compassion.
     So the other side murdered him.
     Orpheus was torn to pieces by demons who didn't like his song.  John
Lennon -- poet, troubadour, musician, pacifist, husband, father and icon --
was torn from this world by a conspiracy of hatred and fear and ignorance
and in a single gunshot became a saint for a new generation.
     John Lennon told us to imagine a world without war, without poverty, a
world without religion, racism, sexism, homophobia and fear.  In honor of
him, do that.  Imagine that ideal world and imagine the alternative and
decide -- would you prefer a corporate planet owned by old white men with a
huge gulf between rich and poor, environment raped, equality bought and
sold instead of given?  Or would you prefer a world where everyone gets the
same chance, the same justice, the same rights? A world governed by mutual
respect and human dignity.

     Seeing a proponent of that dream slaughtered in cold blood just after
I'd voted in my first Presidential election made an impression, made me an
enemy of the rightwing for life, made me angry and political like nothing
else could have. Watching the same gun being fired now, slow motion, at the
clear will of the majority of American voters brings up all the same anger,
makes me want to scream, "No. No, enough, you motherfuckers are not going
to get away with this again."
     They won't unless we let them, but to thwart them we must never forget
that December night, and other nights and days like it, and use the only
weapons that work against thieves and whores -- the light of truth, the
persistence of a just cause, the weight of public opinion.

    Stay angry, stay active and never let the forces of hate and paranoia prevail,
whether they do their dirty work with flying bullets or lying ballots.
That is the lesson of December 8, 1980.
It is still the lesson of December 8, 2000.

From:   stevepen@webtv.net

I found out about John Lennon's death in the worst possible way.

I was only 11 when the Beatles broke up, but I was already a HUGE fan.
Throughout my adolescensce and early adulthood, I was consumed with the
Beatles. I listened to their records over and over. I read everything I
could find about them. I bought every obscure recording I could dig up.

I can measure my life-stages by which Beatle was my favorite at a
certain time in my life: Ringo in my childhood; Paul in the optimism and
sentiment of my early teens; George in my middle teens when I was
searching for answers and groping for something more; and finally John
when I began to reach adulthood and discovered that there were no real
and external answers - life could be both painful and wonderful at the
same moment, but at least someone else understood as well.

But I was not a sports fan, so unlike everyone else, I didn't find out
from Monday Night Football. In fact, I was blissfully unaware until I
walked into work at 8:10 the next morning, where I was greeted by an
insensitive jerk who took obvious pleasure in giving me the bad news.
I think I went out and bought a 12-pack. I no longer remember.

It has always been a source of pain that I had to find out hours after
the fact, and from someone who didn't understand how much we had lost.
It seemed so wrong to me that I wasn't aware; like the opportunity to
properly mourn had passed me by. It felt like the whole world should
have shut down and for some reason it didn't.

The world was a better place for knowing that all four Beatles were in
it. And how much more tragic to lose a man who seemed to be finally
finding the peace he so often wished for the rest of us.

steven pendleton

From: buzzcook@richpoor.net

I was in Sam’s Hoffbrau, Portland Or. We had finished rehearsal for a play
and like normal we went to Sam’s to suck some brews and do the night.

Not long after we got there the bar girl came to our table and asked if we had heard
that John Lennon had been shot. I remember saying that being shot doesn’t mean killed,
but the eyes around the table didn’t look at me as they agreed.

After hearing that the Kennedys and King had been shot, we knew that when they said
"shot" it was just a prelude to killed. Someone started humming and softly singing “Imagine”,
a girl told him to stop or she’d start to cry.  A while later we heard the word.

Lennon was my last hero, it would have been nice to have had the chance to go to his
old man concerts, instead we have the Monkeys

Buzz Cook

Click  Here  to go to lennon2.htm

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