War Is Over! (If You Want It)


For all John’s faults as a person in his life, he was also the first person to own up to them.  He was a man with little to no filter — we all know people like that — and sometimes things would spill out that were tasteless or hurtful.  Sometimes he’d need to have it pointed out to him that he was in the wrong, and more often than not, he’d admit fault.  Sure, his relationship with Cynthia was rocky and fraught with issues, and they weren’t exactly resolved as much as they could have been.  Sure, he was hard to get to know, and he had a hair-trigger temper, but he’d apologize afterwards.  Sure, there was that ‘Lost Weekend’ in the early 70s when Yoko sent him out to LA and he proceeded to be a drunken idiot, but come 1975 he’d gotten that out of his system, admitted how badly he’d acted, and spent five solid years being a close husband and father.  Sure, he and Yoko had their own media circus in the late 60s and early 70s with their Bed-Ins and their Bagism and their other political movements; they knew they were famous and the press (especially the UK press) printed news of every time they sneezed in public, so hey, why not use that to their advantage?

My point:  we’re all infallible.  We’ve all done dumbass things, hurt people, made fun of others.  Had prejudiced and/or bigoted opinions.  Done things that in retrospect we’re mortified or embarrassed to admit happened.  But THAT’S OKAY.  As long as we own up to it, learn from it, change ourselves because of it, then we’ve done some good in this world, both personally and universally.

I learned that from John over the years, and that’s why, despite his faults, I still see him as a decent man as well as an intriguing musician.  That’s why I don’t make much noise about the peccadilloes of those around me and those in the media, unless it’s warranted.  You can have different opinions than me, and I’m totally fine with that.  As long as you own up to them and learn from them, and see how they affect the rest of the world and not just yourself, and become a better person in the process.

We’re all water from different rivers
That’s why it’s so easy to meet
We’re all water in this vast, vast ocean
Someday we’ll evaporate together
What’s the difference?
There’s no difference.
–“We’re All Water”