While millions of people around the world know who John Lennon is, very few remember David Chapman. Yet the fate of the two men became irrevocably intertwined on December 8, 1980, when Chapman killed Lennon with four gunshots outside the Dakota building in New York City.
Chapman has recently been denied parole for the eighth time by the New York authorities, who assert that his release would be incompatible with the safety of the community.
Chapman is one of numerous psychopaths of his generation in the United States; a man with the unbalanced character common to many Vietnam war veterans, although he never in fact fought in the war, but instead suffered from literary obsessions mixed with delusions of grandeur. His favorite book was “Catcher in the Rye”, J.D. Salinger’s exceptional novel about the wanderings of a misfit youth around the streets of Manhattan.
Although Chapman had certain religious inclinations and markedly suicidal tendencies, in his years of greatest instability he turned to crime as a fast track to fame. This led him to the decision to take the life of the legendary co-creator (together with Paul McCartney) of most of the Beatles repertoire.
There can be no doubt that David Chapman attained his fifteen seconds of fame.
But 34 years later, he has still not attained forgiveness.