John Lennon and his Beatles bandmates rocked the world with their inspiring music and powerful messages. Tthe late musician fought for equal rights, free speech and world peace with his hit songs—but not every person was a fan of their movement.
In the ‘70s, John Lennon’s anti-war views and fame caught the eye of President Richard Nixon’s attention, and not in a good way. According to Lennon Biographer Tim Riley, the political leader even tried to deport him, to get him from interfering in the election.
“They decided to attack his immigration status. That they considered him a dangerous political leader, and that one way they could get rid of him was to simply report him,” says Riley in a teaser for REELZ’s new docuseries, John Lennon: It Happened Here.
“In 1971… that was the first year that the voting age was lowered from 21 to 18. So now all of a sudden, a lot of young people are gonna vote,” adds Pop Culture journalist Chris Epting.
“Richard Nixon and his administration were petrified by that. They look at John Lennon as this lighting rod of sort of youth… movement, leadership, where he can steer 18-year-olds to the polls. So they wanna eliminate Lennon from the picture. They’ve identified him as kind of a counter-culture enemy.”
John Lennon was murdered by crazed super-fan David Chapman in 1980. He is survived by wife Yoko Ono, 85, and sons Julian, 55, and Sean, 42.
John Lennon: It Happened Here airs Thursday June 14 at 9:00 ET/PT on REELZ.