SECTION TWO

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COLUMN EIGHTY-THREE, JANUARY 15, 2003
(Copyright © 2003 The Blacklisted Journalist)

WHO KILLED JOHN LENNON?

The last time I saw John Lennon, he didnít see me.

He was standing on the curb outside the Dakota trying to hail a taxi and I was driving by in my station wagon with Jeanne Johnson, the woman who had seduced me even before the death of my wife---Norman Mailerís ex -sweet young thing and then she was Paul Krassnerís ex-wife. She was an ex-everything, including ex-psycho ward inmate and especially ex-hooker. Yeah, she was now the love of my life.

I pulled up at the curb in front of John.

Leaning over past Jeanne in the passengerís seat, I yelled, through the window on her side of the car:

ďJohn! John!Ē

But John refused to turn his head toward me. I would have been happy to taxi John anywhere!

I couldnít imagine that he didnít want to talk to me, even to say hello. Maybe it was just that he didn't hear me. Maybe it was just that he didnít recognize my voice. Maybe, it was just that he was too intent on catching a cab. Maybe it was just that he had long ago become inured to fans calling after them and there were times he wanted to be invisible. There were times he would draw a curtain between him and the rest of the world. Maybe, I should have pulled to the curb, gotten out and approached him. But this bitch at my side that I adored kept keeping my brain in a knot. I was in a bus stop and a big crosstown bus was honking its horn behind me. I had to keep moving.

Bye, bye, John!

Eons later, the bitch has run out at me, my world has crumbled and Iím totally out of my mind. I Ďm sitting in a poker game in Takoma Park, Maryland, with friends in the marijuana trade when a bulletin on the TV in the next room startles me. Someone has shot John Lennon! I rise from the poker table and approach the TV. Why would anybody want to shoot John Lennon? It turns out that John is dead! I sit down, unable to think what to do next. I know George Harrison is at home in Friar Park .I call George. Like me, he, too, is disconsolate---if not moreso.

ďItís like a bad Hollywood scriptwriter wrote it!Ē he tells me sadly. ďItís hard to believe anyone would do that to John.Ē

Hard to believe, except for a limp-brained, evil-minded nobody who wanted so bad to be somebody that he thought he could steal John's stardust not just by robbing John of his life but by  robbing the world of the Beatles. What selfish greed! What a monstrous crime! What a way to want to go down in history! As the man who murdered John Lennon and thereby killed the Beatles! And me, Iím burning mad! Mad beyond anger. My fury cries for revenge! I want to wipe the name of John's killer from the face of the earth.  A crime so heinous, so horrible, so inhuman, so senseless that it leaves me ambivalent about capital punishment---that kind of criminal just don't deserve to breathe the world's air. This turd should have been long ago flushed down the toilet. If you donít want to execute him, send him to colonize the moon!

Enshrine the turd in prison and you reward him with more mornings he can awake to bask in the false glory of knowing he has become a historical figure---no matter how despicable a one. Yes, the nobody is a famous somebody at last! Notorious is a better word. Still, people come to interview him. After all, he's the nobody who killed John Lennon!

Well, we canít wipe him out of the history books and we canít flush either this turd or his stink down the toilet. The best we can do is try to forget his name--- If only we could. But for as long as he remains behind bars, he remains a living reminder of the awful deed he has done. As singer-songwriter Ellis Paul sings in his song called Who Killed John Lennon?, each time this turd is remembered, he as good as kills John Lennon again:

       Do not mention his name.

       The man kills John Lennon, now he's on TV again.
       He's blaming Holden Caulfield in the face of the lens.
       And each time he does it, he kills him again.
       Who killed John Lennon?  

       A loser with a pistol, a martyr's best friend.

       And each time he's televised, he kills him again.
       It's the prize that he wanted when he loaded the gun.
       And each time he's mentioned, murder is done.
       So, who killed John Lennon?  

       A no one.

       He's on TV again.
       He's playing the hero.
       The networks won't let the story end.
       He brings in the ratings for them.
       He's playing the hero.
       But he's a killer.
       He's been convicted.  

       He's been convicted...

       His lawyer must think it's a game.

       Though he knows Lennon's songs, both in word and by name.
       He cold calls the networks, retrieves all the funds.
       Then he scrapes his percentage when the programs are run.
 
         Who killed John Lennon?  

       A lawyer, an agent.
       Big money's best friend.
       And each time he's televised, they kill him again.
       It's the prize that they wanted when he emptied the gun.
       And each time he's mentioned, murder is done.
       So who killed John Lennon?
       A no one.
       A no one.*

* (Coyright © Ellis Paul Publishing (ASCAP) 1994) Reprinted with permission.  ##

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