Saturday, December 08, 2007

John Lennon Remembered

In 1972, the first year 18-year-olds had been given the right to vote in the U.S., and Lennon wanted to help persuade young people to register to vote and to vote against the war — which meant voting against Nixon. Thus, the planned tour was to combine rock music with anti-war organising and voter registration.

The Nixon Administration found out about Lennon's plans from an unlikely source: Republican Senator Strom Thurmond, who suggested in a February 1972 memo that "deportation would be a strategic counter-measure." The next month the Immigration and Naturalization Service began deportation proceedings against Lennon, arguing that his 1968 misdemeanour conviction for cannabis possession in London had made him ineligible for admission to the U.S. Lennon spent the next two years in and out of deportation hearings and constantly under a 60-day order to leave the country, which his attorney managed to get extended repeatedly.

The 1972 Concert tour never happened.

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