As originally constituted, “IMAGINE-a John Lennon Group,” a UNCG Facebook group, was blatantly anti-Global War on Terror/anti-Bush. When I first found this group, I declined to join it as I found the political emphasis offensive as explained below. I assumed administration of the group on 16 August 2007 after finding it abandoned by its creator. I converted the group to a straightforward fan page “for those who love John Lennon and his music, both with the Beatles and solo” and “to celebrate the life of an extraordinary human being.” I wrote this letter to the members of the group on 21 August 2007.
New administration of “IMAGINE-a John Lennon Group”
This page was last modified on 20 April 2012.
Or should that be “few”!? I just wanted to introduce myself and let you know that I’ve assumed administration of the group as it appeared to be abandoned and that I’m changing its focus.
I’m Matt Wallace, a “nontraditional,” read “middle-aged,” student working on a second undergraduate degree in English. You can learn more than you ever wanted to know about me by visiting my Facebook page and my various sites hyperlinked from there.
I’ve been a Beatles fan since I discovered them, hence rock music, when I was about eleven; puberty has a way of altering one’s perception of the world, after all. I always felt an affinity for John on account of his intelligence, passion, and courage, traits which I valued, and continue to value, most highly in myself. The music of the Beatles generally, and John specifically, were sources of solace throughout adolescence and into young adulthood. I’ve long counted “Working Class Hero” as a personal anthem, but then I am a third-generation Teamster.
Now for the “but”:
Though my love and admiration for John has never wavered, in my maturity, my political views have evolved to where I’m far more conservative than he probably ever could have been had he lived past forty. Though I’ve long recognized its charming naivete, “Imagine” still moves me, and the same is true for the rest of his music. His views on war and peace were sincere and noble, and equally naive. As an Army veteran, I know how precious peace is, and I know how horrible war is even without ever experiencing combat. Even so, there are times when war becomes painfully necessary. And now is one of those times.
While John well may have opposed the Global War on Terror under the principle of universal opposition to war, none of us can know how a sixty-year-old John Lennon would have responded to Nine-Eleven. We can only speculate on his reaction to an attack on his beloved New York City by people who opposed almost everything he embodied. Would the man who gave us “Woman is the Nigger of the World” make common cause in any way with adherents of an ideology which advocates the complete subjugation of women?
At any rate, I oppose the usurpation of the moral authority of the dead to bolster a political agenda no one can be certain the deceased would have supported. John was a creature of his times and should be regarded and evaluated in that context. Accordingly, I am eliminating the blatantly political nature of this group and converting it into a fan page for a most extraordinary human being.
That being said, you’re welcome to continue your membership in this group. If I’ve eliminated your reason for being in it, I can understand your departing it. All the same, I hope you’ll stay. There are always times when reality necessitates the palliative of a dreamer...
— Matt Wallace, aka The Compleat Heretic