12th September 1970 Timothy Leary Escapes

Timothy Leary

Today we remember Timothy Leary’s daring and ingenious highwire escape across the highway from his Californian jail. A middle-aged Harvard professor yet symbol of the psychedelic revolution, Leary was assisted to freedom by members of the righteous terrorist organisation, the Weather Underground, and ably financed by those idealistic drug-dealing bikers, the Brotherhood of Eternal Love. Despite the negative outcome of this escapade – kidnapping, a brush with the Black Panthers, even more jail time for the good doctor and the selling out of revolutionary comrades – at least its high aims of uniting disparate radical groups ultimately failed only because of the extraordinary thoroughness with which members of the CIA, FBI, Police, Customs and IRS had managed successfully to infiltrate the Underground. That this gang of unmitigated government bastards had felt compelled to join forces in order to discredit and destroy Hippy Society is, however, merely evidence of how seriously they were being forced to take the actions of Radical America; and of how seriously their authority was being challenged. So today let’s not dwell on how the ‘60s Revolution turned in on itself, but instead remember that brief moment of unity when such disparate groups as the Black Panthers, the Weathermen and the leader of the psychedelic movement came together to confront the MAN.

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