The late John Lennon may have co-founded the most commercially successful band in the history of popular music. He may have inspired millions with his beautiful songwriting, influenced a generation with his political activism and become one of the icons of the ’60s peace movement… But when he wasn’t busy doing that he was a bit of a dick.
There has been more than a whisper of allegations that he was involved in domestic violence and emotional abuse for a while now. But the latest revelations, that Lennon was fond of performing exaggerated impressions of the physically handicapped, may be too much for even the most devoted Beatles fan.
If you couldn’t imagine the left-leaning liberal mocking the misfortune of others, check this appalling video out. It’s an extract from a Channel Four documentary called It Was Alright In The…
Here are some other facts that don’t paint John in a very good light.
Most people find it slightly uncomfortable that Lennon, who was widely adored as an icon of peace and love, would be aggressive and violent towards women. But he admitted it in an interview with Playboy in 1980. “I used to be cruel to my woman, and physically — any woman,” he remarked.
“I was a hitter. I couldn’t express myself and I hit. I fought men and I hit women. That is why I am always on about peace, you see. It is the most violent people who go for love and peace. Everything’s the opposite. But I sincerely believe in love and peace.
“I am not violent man who has learned not to be violent and regrets his violence. I will have to be a lot older before I can face in public how I treated women as a youngster.”
It seems that the apparently gentle hippie actually may have had some seriously uncontrollable mood swings. It has been widely alleged that he was physically abusive towards his first wife, Cynthia. She outlined the claims in her autobiography and they were repeated in the critically acclaimed book ‘John Lennon: The Life’, by Beatles biographer Philip Norman. He has also been accused of declining to ‘give peace a chance’ during his second marriage to Yoko Ono.
More Casual Violence
A drunken John once attacked Bob Wooler, the man who was responsible for introducing The Beatles to their manager Brian Epstein, after he jokingly suggested that John and Brian had engaged in an intimate relationship. Wooler was left with several broken ribs and admitted to hospital. John said he only stopped the assault because he was ‘actually going to kill him’.
Treatment Of His First Son
John once referred to his first son Julian as an unplanned child who was the product of a “bottle of whiskey” in another interview with Playboy. He said:
I’m not going to lie to Julian. Ninety percent of the people on this planet, especially in the West, were born out of a bottle of whiskey on a Saturday night, and there was no intent to have children.
In an interview with Record Collector Magazine Julian argued that his father was emotionally absent and indifferent during his upbringing. He also admitted feelings of jealousy over the attention his second son, born to Yoko Ono, received from his father. He said:
Mum was more about love than Dad. He sang about it, he spoke about, but he never really gave it, at least not to me as his son.
I’m not saying that Lennon never did anything good in his life; his lyrics touched the hearts of millions across the globe and he brought the positive message of peace to the masses. But I think it’s fair to say that he wasn’t the outwardly sensitive and caring soul he was canonised as.