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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The Doors singer Jim Morrison will get a posthumous pardon for an indecent exposure conviction in Florida after Gov. Charlie Crist got a commitment for enough votes from other members of the state's Board of Executive Clemency to approve it.
Morrison was appealing the conviction when he was found dead in a Paris bathtub in 1971. The meeting Thursday comes a day after the singer would have turned 67.
Crist can't issue a pardon on his own. He and the three-member Cabinet serve as the Clemency Board. Approval is required by the governor and at least two other members.
The did-he-or-didn't-he debate over what happened at the Miami concert was revived by Crist's interest in the case. The surviving band members say a drunken Morrison teased the crowd, but never exposed himself.
"It never actually happened. It was mass hypnosis," said Ray Manzarek, The Doors' keyboard player.
Manzarek and guitarist Robby Krieger said Morrison's behavior was influenced by an acting troupe that disrobed during plays.
"He was just doing a mind trip - as they would say - a mind trip on the audience and they totally fell for it," Manzarek said.
Manzarek said Morrison was far drunker than usual, to the point where they questioned whether he should go on stage.
Gov. Crist began considering a pardon for Morrison in 2007 at the at the urging of a fan. He says he has doubts about whether Morrison actually exposed himself during the rowdy concert March 1, 1969. Morrison was convicted of public profanity and indecent exposure and sentenced to six months in jail and a $500 fine.
The case has become murkier with the passage of years. Morrison's defense attorney said recently that the singer received a fair trial with credible witnesses on both sides, and fans who were at the show have differing recollections.
Here's what most people agree on: The Doors went on stage late, the Dinner Key Auditorium was oversold and wasn't air conditioned. Morrison was drunk and stopped in the middle of songs with an anti-authority, profanity-riddled rant.
A live lamb was brought on stage at one point, and Morrison also grabbed a police officer's hat and threw it in the crowd. The singer took off his shirt and fiddled with his belt, and fans poured onto the stage.
"There were 100 photos offered in evidence at the trial, photos of everything - Jim with the lamb, Jim with the hat, on the stage collapsing, riot in the audience. Not one photo of Jim's magnificent member," said Manzarek.
A pardon won't change Morrison's image, but it will right a wrong, Manzarek and Krieger said.
"Jim's legacy is one of Dionysian madness and frenzy and of a chaotic American poet. I don't think that the Miami episode has altered his image one iota," Manzarek said.
Krieger added: "Nobody would like to have that charge hanging over their head even if they are dead. I'm sure his family would be happy to see that go, especially since it never happened."
There are fans who still swear Morrison exposed himself.
"He actually unzipped and pulled his pants down a little bit, enough where you can see everything. I do remember being shocked when that happened, and definitely it happened," said Lee Winer, 56, who now lives north of San Francisco. "I can still picture it like it was yesterday."
Others disagree. Helene Davis of Miami said she was an 18-year-old in the front row of the concert with a friend. She said Morrison teased the crowd by pretending he was going to unzip his pants, but never actually exposed himself.
"We were watching and waiting because it was obvious that's where he was going with it," Davis said. "I just remembered thinking, 'Yes, it's going to happen! It's going happen! It's going to happen!' And it never did."
~ The Washington Post
The Lizard King and his cock may now truly (hopefully?) rest in peace.
12 blew out from under the bed:
I hate to be a stick in the mud, and being almost 64 yo, I was a huge fan, "back in the day" (try to set the night on fire) but I wonder - - Doesn't the governor have something serious to spend his time on?
- your friendly aging curmudgeon
I don't suppose Jim is bothered one way or the other now.
Jim wouldn't have even given a damn about this issue if he was still alive. What a waste of time.
I agree with David and Heff.
Seriously? Tax dollars actually paid these people for this shit? I think I know where to start doing budget cuts...
Heff's right, even if Jim was still around... he wouldn't have given a shit about this anyway.
Fucking mockery of America AND Jim.
Of course this is ridiculous! Florida is ridiculous! Remember "hanging chads"? It's an idiotic tradition that the outgoing Governor/President do asinine
"pardons". Charlie Crist, he of the flip-flopping political parties, figured he'd do this publicity stunt to boost support for his future aspirations from aging baby-boomers. Jim Morrison wouldn't give a rat's ass if he was pardoned in Florida or not. The only possibly good thing about it, is the publicity might encourage some of the younger generation to investigate and listen to one of the world's best poets. Enjoy some more of Florida's ridiuclousness ~
Men may not be seen publicly in any kind of strapless gown.
Oral sex is illegal.
Penalty for horse theft is death by hanging.
Women may not expose their breasts while performing "topless dancing".
You may not kiss your wife's breasts.
nitebyrd ~ Wot? oral sex is illegal? Screw that one.... mind you my tonge hasn't eaten any pussie lately, but I keep my tongue fit by doin exercises... but that's a trade secret honey ;)
Hey there! I wanted to stop by and let you know that you won my gingerbread man ornament!
Send me your mailing address at artful.danni(at)gmail(dot)com and I'll have him in the mail as soon as I can! :)
I too doubt that Jim Morrison would care about a pardon. I frankly think he would not want one. He was a great poet, and not all poets are great people. We all have flaws, Gov. Crist has a few as well I would suppose. But, it's neat that you like Jim, for some reason I have thought you'd be way too young to even know who he was. And, alas, I'm way too old now, since I was there!
Indi ~ Florida is a weird state. Actually, all the states have these crazy "blue" laws still kicking around. Some are just totally outrageous.
Danni ~ OMG! I am SO happy! He is so cute! THANK YOU!!!
UP ~ I'm as old as dirt! I just got invited to my 4oth HS reunion! Jesus H. Christ, that's scary! LOL
I was a big fan of The Doors and The Who but not The Beatles. Was supposed to be at Woodstock but we decided not to fight traffic after hearing early reports. Idiots! So, yes. I'm THAT old!
I get annoyed when polititions do things like this.
What a waste of time.
As for strange laws, many states have them.
I live in WA and on the books it is against the law to take a womans virginity here.
Another not enforced strange one for sure, but it exists.
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