IMAGINE THERE'S NO HEAVEN
And no religion too. And no fucking FBI. I mean, hey, it's not like they were there when we needed them. You know, the Mafia, the Columbians, the JFK-RFK-MLK assassinations, 9/11? Nah, they were too busy spying on bigger threats. Like the Beatles. No? Yeah, yeah, yeah!
Well, John Lennon, anyway. A dangerous lad, that one: Always on about peace. So, lots of your tax dollars were spent spying on him. Well, that's what happens when you piss off a Republican President: Richard "Not A Crook" Nixon, to wit. Lennon felt he had a civic responsibility to fulfill, registering kids to vote, as an adopted New Yorker and a citizen of that "Mother of Parliaments" country (you know, Magna Carta, John Locke, and all that jazz, our only major-power ally in Iraq) with an OBE, no less (Order of the British Empire). Naturally, Tricky Dick had him shadowed, and tried to deport him. --See, even paranoids have enemies.
That didn't work, so, after the Carter interregnum, a child of some close personal friends of the Reagan/Bush mob gunned John down in front of the star-crossed Dakota apartment building on W.72nd Street and Central Park West. At the time, I was living in a hotel on W.77th & Broadway, about seven blocks away. My clock-radio alarm went off before sunrise that cold November day, set to the all-news station. (I never set it there again.) I was still half-dreaming when a voice in the darkness said former Beatle John Lennon had been shot, out in front of his apartment bulding, right there in my neighbourhood. A freaking nightmare! I couldn't wake up from it. I kept trying. There wan't enough coffee in the world. John, shot in my neighbourhood. John Lennon, shot dead. Shot with a gun. Like, "Bang-bang Shoot-shoot," for real. I called my ex-wife, who lived a few blocks away. "I can't believe it," she answered, knowing it was me, even in the days before caller-ID. (Ain't hate grand?)
We weren't crazed fan-types or anything, but, like every one of seven million other New Yorkers, we felt we HAD to do SOMETHING. John was our neighbour. Lived in my own damned hood. So we went down Columbus Avenue to a florist on 73rd street, and bought some flowers. It was the closest flower shop to the Dakota. The florist was all red-eyed. He said John and Yoko used to buy flowers there all the time. They were very nice, he said, just regular people. How could this happen? How could this happen? How could we have LET it happen? And in OUR city! SHIT!!!SHIT!!!SHIT!!!
It was SO not New York. Believe me, if some mugger had tried to stick up John Lennon, as soon as he'd opened his famous Liverpool mouth, the mugger would have been apologizing and trying to give John his own wallet. OK, New York is a tough town, but we do have SOME heart. And this was a BEATLE! JOHN!!! The smart one.
Lots of people were putting flowers on the gates and on the sidewalk in front of the Dakota, scene of evil "Rosemary's Baby." We all just looked at each other like somebody had just shot our cool Dad, our best older friend, our working class hero. It was just too, too shitty. And too, too irreversible.
So, that's who your government chose to spy on BEFORE the "Patriot Act." Imagine if the Feebs were watching while Chapman stalked and killed Lennon. Imagine whom they're spying on now. Imagine.
"FBI may be forced to reveal all on Lennon"
"Lennon's killer in new parole bid"
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