Thursday, June 12, 2008

peace

I watched the documentary The U.S. vs John Lennon, which was really interesting. Lennon was my hero when I was in high school. I loved peace symbols throughout pretty much my whole youth. As a young kid, I marched with my dad against a nuclear power plant, in college boycotted Mitsubishi for their rainforest destruction activities, and when I came back from Australia in 1991, I went to a peace protest against the first Iraq war in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. I used to wear peace pins and had a peace necklace for as long as I could remember, until I met a certain someone who shall remain unnamed but who criticized and called me a "Peace faggot." Not to mention the fact that it was just a derogatory thing to call me, I don't like the use of the word "faggot" either because I don't like to call anyone any negative derogatory terms that serve no purpose other than to isolate and separate and divide and insult.


Anyway said unnamed person used to call everyone who was a peace-loving flower-child hippieishness person like myself a peace faggot and so I guess I just fit into that category. Kind of made me feel like crap, so, I changed. I didn't really change, but I changed my externals to suit the person I was with. But inside I was and still am - and thank God it's back out in the open in my life - I am a peace-loving flower-child bohemian hippie-ish freak and proud of it whether anyone likes it or not! There are so many parallels between the Vietnam War and this one... it's uncanny. There are certainly differences, but much commonality.


So back to my point. I LOVED Lennon as a teen, still do but haven't really been as into him or the music in the past several years. When we had to do an essay in English on our hero, I chose John Lennon. (I also wrote an essay on the Abuse of Authority by Parents, Teachers, and Police - and that essay still cracks me up. I also wrote an essay on LSD, which my teachers just loved, let me tell you, and I'm pretty sure Lennon was mentioned in that one too). Anyway so I really loved his song Imagine. It's brilliant and beautiful and sort of the theme song of my youth.


Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say that I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one
- Imagine, John Lennon (part of it)




I learned a lot about him from this movie that I didn't know! I thought the title was just a play on words but apparently there actually was a court case where Immigration tried to get him thrown out of the country! The Nixon Administration wiretapped his phone and felt very threatened by him, and particularly his friendships with radical activists Abbie Hoffman and John Sinclair. It was really intriguing to see all these Nixon Admin people and FBI agents who engaged in these tactics now coming out and saying what they did was wrong. Every one interviewed from the "other side" had changed their mind on whether what they did was "ok" or not, pretty much except Gordon Liddy, who hadn't changed his perspective much it seemed.


One thing that freaked me out (don't know why, it shouldn't surprise me...) is that after Lennon made his statement that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus, the radio stations did the exact same thing they did to the Dixie Chicks!!! They had everyone burn Beatles record albums and stomp them, and they boycotted their songs. Wow! What a trip! Man, people are such followers, that is what scares me.

4 comments:

michele said...

i just found your blog and enjoy your words. i to am a bohemian hippy flower chick and proud of it!
i was also at the rally against the war in san francisco in 1991, i went to all of them. as a believer in peace war never ever changes a thing.
violence never and will never create peace. i love the peace sign too and still wear it!

satori17@yahoo.com

WENDEE HOLTCAMP said...

thanks michele! Yay for bohemian hippy flower chicks!!! :) I need to get myself another peace pin or necklace...

vlk40 said...

I am another peace loving hippie chick, and very proud of it. I'm raising my children the same way too. I wear a silver peace ring all of the time. Still loving your blog and the words and pictures that you have to share- thank you. :)

Anonymous said...

Also check out this book on Lennon, which covers a lot of the same themes.