John Lennon, scumbag?

I’ve always been a bit ambiguous about John Lennon. I generally prefer Paul’s contributions to the Beatles (though I concede John’s work, especially post-Beatles, had more gravitas.) In interviews and whatnot Lennon often comes across as a pretentious twat.

Today I stumbled across this post which savages from Lennon from a feminist perspective. Some of the complaints I find rather forced (Lennon’s “appropriation of Indian music and culture”? Seriously?), but there’s a lot I did not know here. In particular, Lennon almost beat a man to death. (Quote below from this site, linked off the aforementioned blog.)

Wooler was a very close friend of the Beatles and had introduced them on stage some 300 times. This incident happened at Paul’s 21st birthday party, on June 18, 1963. At the party, Wooler was joking around with John and said (with heavy gay intimations): “Come on John, what really happened with you and Brian? Everybody knows anyway, so tell us.”

John had been heavily drinking that night and Lennon was a notorious “bad drunk”. In a blind rage, John proceeded to beat the stuffing out of a very surprised Bob Wooler, literally kicking him repeatedly in the ribs as he lay on the ground in a bloody heap.

According to John, the only reason he actually stopped the savage beating was because, “I realized I was actually going to kill him… I just saw it like a screen. If I hit him once more, that’s really going to be it. I really got shocked and for the first time thought: ‘I can kill this guy.’”

Also worth reading (though sadly under-sourced): 10 Unpleasant Facts About John Lennon.

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