John was a great artist and activist. He was born in Liverpool, United Kingdom on October 9,1940. John’s father is Alfred Lennon and his mother is Julia Lennon.
His brothers are David Henry Lennon and Robin Francis Lennon. His sisters are Julia Baird, Jacqueline Dykins, and Ingrid Pederson.
John Lennon married Cynthia Powell on August 23, 1962 and Julian Lennon is their son. Then John and Cynthia separated. John also married Yoko Ono on March 20, 1969 and their son is Sean Lennon.
The places John lived were in New York City, United States and Liverpool, United Kingdom. John Lennon tragically died at 40 years old on December 9, 1980.
John had a challenging life when he was young because he never had a father figure. He was constantly getting in trouble. His parents separated which lead him to live with his Aunt Mimi Smith. His mother died at an early age.
The reason John Lennon never had a father figure was because his father, Alfred Lennon, was a merchant seaman and he didn’t see his son that much when John was young.
Alfred was also gone at John’s birth.
John was constantly getting in trouble because he was a prankster and he loved getting in trouble. John drew grotesque figures and cripples, which he enjoyed doing when he was a boy and a young adult. John got bad grades when he was in school but he had artistic talent, even his school master thought John Lennon could go to an art school for college.
John also got expelled from school when he was 5 years old due to his misbehavior.
It was hard for John Lennon when his parents separated when he was 4 years old. He had to live with his Aunt Mimi Smith, Julia Lennon’s sister, because of the separation of his parents.
One of the most traumatic events in John’s life was when an off-duty police officer that was driving a car fatally struck John’s mother, Julia Lennon, in July 1958. This event devastated John.
There were other challenges that lay ahead of John Lennon, which was to teach people to stand up for what they believe in and to dream big. He showed this when he protested against the Vietnam War and when he stood up for minorities. These challenges made him more important than a Beatles member, it made him play an important role in politics.
One of John Lennon’s most important jobs was that he was an activist, which made him into a great political figure. He played an important role in the Peace Movement and he supported colored people, including the Native Americans and African Americans. He backed up both races’ rights in the early 1970’s.
In 1971, the Onondaga Indians, a Native American tribe, protested against the construction of a freeway through their land that was planned by the government. John Lennon participated in the protest.
John Lennon stated the need for black consciousness and he expressed sympathy for the African American struggle. The faith in self-defense and the 10-point program of the Black Panthers was supported and stated by John Lennon when he appeared on The Dick Cavett Show in 1972.
Founded by Bobby Seale and Huey Newton in October 15, 1966, the Black Panthers was a political organization that challenged police brutality against the African American community. The White Establishment pathologized and criminalized the Panthers.
Calls for black children having a decent education that was free of historical bias and black self-determination was encompassed in the 10-point program. Huey Newton stated in the 10-point program that he wanted blacks to have “land, bread, housing… justice and peace”.
Another important role that John Lennon played was in the Peace Movement. His peace ideas were something that people remember about him and he did this to persuade people to protest against the Vietnam War. John peacefully protested with his wife, Yoko Ono, and both of them hosted “bed-ins”, which is when a person stays in their room in bed to protest against war for 14 days. This was an experimental test of new ways to promote peace. The protest of peace was done in Montreal and Amsterdam.
While John and Yoko stayed in their rooms during a “bed-in” in Montreal they recorded a very famous anti-war song, “Give Peace a Chance”. “Imagine” was another famous anti-war song that was written by John Lennon.
The Peace Movement was successful. Half a million people gathered and sang “Give Peace a Chance” as loud as they could, which surprised John but he was happy at the same time. This event was on the second Vietnam Moratorium Day. Many people listened to John Lennon when he protested for peace in the Peace Movement, which he taught many people to dream big and to stand up for what you believe in.
John Lennon said, “If someone thinks that love and peace is a cliche that must have been left behind in the sixties, that’s his problem. Love and peace are eternal.”
Another important role that John Lennon held to help politics was that he was a singer and a songwriter. John released the album “Some Time in New York City” in 1971, which is a fascinating social and historical document, even though it was not a great commercial and critical success.
“Give Peace a Chance”, released in 1969, and “Imagine”, released in 1971, are both famous anti-war songs. Some of the lyrics to the song “Imagine” are, “Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say 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.” I think this means everyone needs to contribute in order to have world peace.
“Happy Xmas(War is Over)” was written by John Lennon and Yoko Ono and it was released in 1972. John decided to make the song into a Christmas record with an anti-war message. The anti-war message is the slogan in the song, “War is over! If you want it.” This slogan is the central message of John Lennon’s and Yoko Ono’s Peace Movement. People thought of the song “Happy Xmas(War is Over)” as a Christmas standard instead of a song about protesting the Vietnam War.
The meaning of the slogan “War is over! If you want it” is that people say they hate war and fighting in the world, even though they won’t do anything about it. That is why you make peace instead of wishing or praying for peace. To relate this song with everyone’s lives, you can’t wish or pray to end conflicts with others or yourself, you have to make a change within yourself. “If you want it.”
During the time John Lennon was an influential, successful, and great political figure and musician something tragic happened to him on the date December 8, 1980. Mark David Chapman assassinated John Lennon around 10:50 P.M. on a Monday. Chapman did this because of John Lennon’s comment about the Beatles being more famous than Jesus. He also found that John’s lyrics did not fit his lifestyle, however Chapman saw the Beatles and Lennon as role models.
People were grieving John Lennon’s death and they thought it was too early for John to be reduced to silence. On Wednesday, December 10, 1980, Yoko Ono had John’s body cremated after the dreadful event.
Millions of people around the globe responded to Yoko’s request, which was that Yoko asked everybody to be quiet for 10 minutes on December 14, 1981 if they wanted to pray for John. Near Central Park in New York, 225,000 people gathered while all the New York radio stations went off air for 10 minutes. To mourn John’s death, more than 30,000 people gathered in Liverpool, John Lennon’s native city in the United Kingdom.
John Lennon had other occupations other than being an activist, a songwriter, and a singer, such as being an actor, a film director, music producer, keyboard player, guitarist, film producer, visual artist, poet, screenwriter, and a film score composer.
Other things John accomplished was he was awarded Song of the Year for “Michelle” with Paul McCartney in 1967. John Lennon was a member of the Beatles and they received the Grammy Lifetime achievement award in 2014. The Beatles got the Academy Award for Best Music(Original Song Score) for the documentary film “Let it Be” in 1970. The Brit award for the Best British Group was awarded to the Beatles in 1977. Also, John Lennon has had 25 number one singles on the U.S. Hot 100 chart as a performer.
John Lennon said many famous quotes and one of them is, “Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.” To me, this means whenever I take a break from my work, I spend time with my family and have a great time. I feel like I’m wasting time from my work, yet I enjoyed wasting this time, so it was never wasted. Another quote from John is, “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end,” this quote means you have to have hope in order to complete a task.
One more quote from John Lennon which is, “When I went to school they asked me what I wanted to be. I wrote down ‘happy’. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment and I told them they didn’t understand life.” This quote means that you don’t have to be wealthy and have a high paying job, you have to be happy, satisfied, and thankful for what you have to be able to exceed in life.
What I learned from John Lennon that makes him a role model to me is that I have to stand up for what I believe in and to dream big. I have to be determined to fix my own problems, enjoy life, have hope in order to complete a task, and I don’t have to be constantly working in order to be happy and to exceed in life.