On John Lennon's Birthday, a Few Words About War
Why "pacifists" aren't "fascifists"
John Lennon was born October 9, 1940. He would have been 82 today.
In 1972, South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond sent a letter to the office of Attorney General John Mitchell, suggesting Lennon be deported. Thurmond believed Lennon’s antiwar and anti-Nixon views would spread in rock concerts and festivals, and cited a “confidential source” in saying, “if Lennon’s visa is terminated it would be a strategy counter-measure.” Mitchell’s deputy sent a letter to the Immigration Commissioner asking if there was “any basis” to deport Lennon. A court battle ended with a Judge named Irving Kaufman striking down his deportation, writing:
Lennon’s four-year battle to remain in our country is a testimony to his faith in this American dream.
Though I’m more a fan of Strawberry Fields than kumbaya anthems like “Imagine” and “Give Peace a Chance,” I figured someone ought to say a word or two in defense of nonviolence on John Lennon’s birthday.