Picketing, boycotts, sit-ins, marching; protests can take many forms, though most, with the exception of the bumper sticker, involve some sort of action-oriented defiance. But in 1969 Yoko Ono and John Lennon proved yet another advantage of being famous. While the rest of us risk contending with pepper spray and rubber bullets, Lennon taught us that if you're a Beatle, you don't have to get out of bed.
Knowing their marriage would garner a lot of publicity, the couple invited the media along for its Amsterdam honeymoon. Everyone expected them to have sex for the cameras, but instead it turned into the famous week-long "bed-in" for peace, which was followed by another in Montreal a few months later. Photographer Gerry Deiter, on assignment for Life magazine, was the only photographer to document all eight days of the Montreal bed-in. However, when the story and photos never ran, Deiter stored the negatives away for the next 35 years. After September 11, though, he felt compelled to reintroduce the world to Lennon and Ono's message of peace.
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SHOW ME HOW
Old School Square Cultural Center (51 N Swinton Ave., Delray Beach) celebrates the 40th anniversary of the bed-in with the traveling award-winning Deiter exhibit Give Peace a Chance: John Lennon and Yoko Ono's Bed-In for Peace. The exhibit makes its Florida debut October 5, runs through October 11, and includes 30 large format photographs by Deiter as well as contributor interviews, music, memorabilia, screenings of Give Peace a Song, Hard Day's Night, and Let It Be. October 9, the center will hold a birthday bash for what would have been Lennon's 69th birthday.