Black activist and journalist Kevin Powell wants to replace The Star Spangled Banner with John Lennon’s song Imagine, a song extoling atheism and the abolition of private property. It’s a Marxist’s dream anthem. Has he ever listened to the words? Every millionaire black person would have to divest himself or herself of billions of dollars. In addition to imagining no religion, Imagine also includes, “imagine no possessions.” There are a lot of black millionaires and at least five billionaires.
- Jay-Z: $1 billion.
- Michael Jordan: $1.9 billion.
- Oprah Winfrey: $2.7 billion.
- David Steward: $3.5 billion.
- Robert Smith: $5 billion.
Ray Comfort writes: “Every year since 2005, John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’ has been played just before the New Year’s ball drop in Times Square [where there are tons of millionaires and lots of possessions]. ‘Imagine’ was played at the 1996 and the 2004 Olympics, and the 2006 Winter Olympics’ opening ceremony.” Emeli Sandé recorded a cover version for the BBC that was used during the credits at the close of the 2012 London Summer Olympics.
Rolling Stone magazine lists “Imagine” as No. 3 on the list of the “500 Greatest Songs of All Time,” describing it as Lennon’s “greatest musical gift to the world.”
In Lennon’s last interview before his death we’ve come to learn that Lennon was embarrassed by his early political and social radicalism. Fred Seaman, who worked with Lennon from 1979 to his death on December 8, 1980, claims that the music legend “was a Ronald Reagan fan who enjoyed arguing with left-wing radicals who reminded him of his former self.” Seaman continued:
“I also saw John embark in some really brutal arguments with my uncle, who’s an old-time communist… He enjoyed really provoking my uncle… Maybe he was being provocative… but it was pretty obvious to me he had moved away from his earlier radicalism.
“He was a very different person back in 1979 and 80 than he’d been when he wrote Imagine. By 1979 he looked back on that guy and was embarrassed by that guy’s naivete.”
In a series of interviews published after his death, “[t]he man who famously called for imagining a world with ‘No religion’ also jettisoned his anti-theism: “‘People got the image I was anti-Christ or antireligion,’ he said. ‘I’m not at all. I’m a most religious fellow. I’m religious in the sense of admitting there is more to it than meets the eye. I’m certainly not an atheist.’” ((David Sheff, All We are Saying: The Last Major Interview with John Lennon and Yoko Ono (New York: St. Martin’s Griffin, 1981), 127.))
Not only did Lennon reject atheism, he also rejected extreme forms of evolution. He instinctively knew that there was something special about humans and different about the animal world even if he did not how the theory of evolution is argued:
“Nor do I think we came from monkeys, ((Evolutionists do not claim that humans evolved from monkeys, but that humans and simians evolved from a common ancestor. It’s possible that Lennon knew the difference but rhetorically used “monkey-to-man” evolution for rhetorical effect. His dig at six-day creationism shows that he was aware of the competing position.)) by the way. That’s another piece of garbage. What the hell’s it based on? We couldn’t have come from anything—fish, maybe, but not monkeys. I don’t believe in the evolution of fish to monkeys to men. Why aren’t monkeys changing into men now? It’s absolute garbage. It’s absolutely irrational garbage, as mad as the ones who believe the world was made only four thousand years ago, the fundamentalists. That and the monkey thing are both as insane as the apes standing up suddenly.” ((Sheff, All We are Saying, 112.))
What happened to Lennon? Why did his views change? He grew up. He matured. He was willing to look reality in the face without blinking and say, “I was wrong.”
Consider Lennon’s song “Help Me to Help Myself”:
Well, I tried so hard to settle down
But the angel of destruction keeps on houndin’ me all around
But I know in my heart
The leaves are shining in the sun
That we never really parted
Oh no, oh, help me, lord
Oh, help me, lord
Please, help me, lord, yeah, yeah
Help me to help myself
Help me to help myself
The man who imagined a world with “no religion” and “no possessions” left an estate worth more than $275 million, “not bad for one who referred to himself as an ‘instinctive socialist,’ for one who believed in the abolition of ‘all money, police, and government.’” ((David A. Noebel, The Legacy of John Lennon: Charming or Harming a Generation? (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), 11.)) His early flirtation with the theory of socialism was naive.
Maybe he was persuaded by the lyrics from fellow-Beatle George Harrison’s “Taxman_._” Its lyrics attack the high levels of progressive taxation taken by the British Labour government. At the income level of the Beatles, it was 95 percent. In the January 22, 1981 Playboy interview, Lennon admitted that he “threw in a few one-liners to help the song along.” In a later version of the song, Harrison added “If you’re overweight, I’ll tax your fat.”
Lennon knew that sending money to poor nations was counter-productive.
When it was pointed out that a Beatles reunion could possibly raise $200 million for a poverty-stricken country in South America, Lennon had no time for it. “You know, America has poured billions into places like that. It doesn’t mean a damn thing. After they’ve eaten that meal, then what? It lasts for only a day. After the $200,000,000 is gone, then what? It goes round and round in circles.”
It’s time that atheists and liberals follow Lennon’s lead and also grow up.
Atheism and socialism are literal dead ends. They are destroyers of people and societies. If there is no God, then Lennon’s death at the hands of Mark David Chapman was the result of the survival of the fittest, the fittest being Chapman. Atheism is like setting one’s sails “for the island of nihilism. This is the darkest continent of the darkened mind—the ultimate paradise of the fool.” ((R. C. Sproul, The Consequences of Ideas: Understanding the Concepts That Shaped Our World (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2000), 171.))