A vintage interview with John Lennon, posted on YouTube, reveals that the iconic Beatles founder did not believe in overpopulation, and referred to it as a “joke.”
Lennon and wife, Yoko Ono, were both outspoken on issues facing their generation in the 1960s and 1970s. During this time, author Paul Ehrlich published his now discredited book “The Population Bomb” which called for population control to prevent the global crises.
In 1968, Ehrlich told a Planned Parenthood audience that 3.5 million people, “mostly children” will die this year.
The Stanford professor of doom also predicted: “In the 1970s the world will undergo famines – hundreds of millions of people are going to starve to death.” Ehrlich also falsely predicted that by the 1980s, most of the world’s key natural resources would be depleted; that 65 million Americans would die of starvation between 1980-89; and that by 1999 “the population of the U.S. will shrink from 250 million to about 22.5 million … because of famine and global warming.”
It was this back drop that most likely prompted a member of the audience to ask Yoko Ono how she, as a woman, felt about “overpopulation in the world.”
“Well, I think the problem is not overpopulation as people believe to be. But its more of the balance of things,” she replied.
“You know like food. Some part of the world is wasted the food and some parts nobody has food. And that kinda of a balance, if that is solved I don’t think we will be worried so much about overpopulation.”
She was interrupted by John Lennon who called overpopulation a joke:
“I think its a bit of a joke the way people have made this overpopulation thing into a kind of myth. I don’t really believe it, you know. I think whatever happens will balance itself out and work itself out and work itself out.” Lennon stated.
“It’s alright for us all living say ‘well its enough of us so we won’t have any more don’t let anybody else live.’ I don’t believe in that, I think we’ve got enough food and money to feed everybody and I think the natural balance even though old people will last longer. I think there is enough room for us…”
When Lennon was questioned again, he responded:
“Yeah, I don’t believe overpopulation, you know. I think that’s kind of a myth the government has thrown out to keep your mind off Vietnam…and all the important subjects.”
The host of the show then stated, “Oh, I think you are wrong about that,” he said.
And in typical Lennon style he replies, “Oh, I don’t care!“