Catcher In The Rye (Chapman/Lennon Essay)

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

download word file, 2 pages 5.0

It was in December of 1980, when the former Beatles star, John Lennon was brutally murdered in front of his Manhattan apartment building. His assassin, Mark David Chapman had asked him just hours earlier for an autograph. Chapman was believed to be the only one involved in Lennon's murder. Throughout the years since the killing of John Lennon, there have been many speculations as to whether or not Chapman was mentally competent to stand trial. My personal belief is that at the time of Lennon's death, Chapman was in a severe state of mental instability and could not stand trial as a result.

Chapman did not have a very good beginning in life. His mother was very protective and abusive towards him. Traumatic experiences like this one can often set a person up for disaster later on in life; obviously these early life experiences did for Chapman. Besides having to deal with an abusive mother, he believed that "little people" lived in the wall of his room.

He thought that it was his responsibility to put on private rock concerts for these people. Chapman had a chance to experience drugs at a fairly young age and discovered the Beatles around the same time. He has said that his favorite band member was John Lennon. After listening to Beatles records repeatedly, he came to also believe that John Lennon was sending subliminal messages to him. After hearing these messages and reading J.D. Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, he came to the conclusion that he had to kill John Lennon.

I think that when Chapman had came up with the idea of killing John Lennon, he was in a mental state of turmoil. I do not necessarily believe that he is innocent of the murder, but I do agree that he was...