The Case Against John Lennon
And then there is the pull quote that highlights the column:
Nothing to live or die for — what a nightmare.
It makes you immediately start singing John Lennon’s song “Imagine” in your head. “Nothing to live or die for... hmmmm hmmmm hmmmm hmmmm hmmmmm.”
My gosh, you think, how awful! John Lennon said there is nothing to live for?!? That is so wrong!
Well, yes, it IS wrong, because it is a misquote. Intentional or not, I’m not sure, but the actual lyrics from the song say “...nothing to KILL or die for....” Not nothing to live for.
So what is going on here? Why is the WSJ promoting a column with such a provacative title and using a misquote to mislead readers into a negative reaction against John Lennon?
The column itself is a mess. It is poorly written, jumbled and fails to adequately explain how John Lennon or his song “Imagine” has anything to do with what the column appears to be about.
Here is the pertinent section that mentions Lennon:
Mr. Sharansky has a new book, titled "Defending Identity." It would be equally accurate to call it "The Case Against John Lennon."
Or, more specifically, the case against "Imagine," Lennon's anthem to a world with "no countries . . . nothing to kill or die for/And no religion too." For Mr. Sharansky, a nine-year resident of the Perm 35 prison camp, that's a vision that smacks too much of the professed beliefs of the ex-Beatle's near namesake, Vladimir Ilyich.
What the hell? Does he think he’s being clever or something? Lennon sounds like Lenin. Get it? So obviously they must be related or they must think alike or something right?
Nevermind that “Lenin” was actually an alias for Vladimir Illich Ulyanov, while the surname Lennon dates back hundreds of years to old Ireland.
No, they sound alike so there must be a connection. Right? Kind of like how Obama sounds like Osama so they must be related too. Yeah. That’s the level of reasoning that the column sinks to.
And of course he never goes back and explains how V.I. Lenin’s brutal and dictatorial ways have any similarity or correlation to Lennon’s ode to world peace.
But fortunately for the cretins who run the WSJ editorial pages, John Lennon is dead and can’t defend his classic work against their asinine columnist’s offhanded smear.