Monday, September 08, 2008

What Is It With Doomsday?

The BBC has a great article about those convinced the world is to end, and more specifically those who think the world will end this Wednesday.

I'm never going to say never. The world could end in a minutes time. Or at least the human world might end if there is some form of accidental nuclear war. But I also think that believing the world is going to end any time soon is an exercise in self delusion, and to say we'll end it is human arrogance. People are so convinced about the all encompassing powers of humanity that they forget we are just starting on the road to true scientific discovery.

Global warming for instance is often portrayed as an end of the world scenario. People have actually insisted that all life on Earth might be extinguished. No, no, no. We might die. All our favourite animals might perish. But the Earth and life will continue and eventually we will be but a distant bad memory. Human arrogance never fails to astound me. The fight against Global Warming must be stated as "Bad for our current way of life, and for all we hold dear" and not as a Doomsday scenario. As soon as you mention the end of the world most people turn off and think "Crazy". They do this for good reason.

Many have made predictions for the end of the world and have been quite rightly mocked. How anyone can still be a Jehovah's Witness is beyond me. And these crazy people still exist out there. Just take a quick read over at Rapture Ready (go on, it's amusing if you pretend that these are not real people with real lives. Otherwise it's just depressing). These people don't just think the End of the World is coming but WANT IT.

I'm quite prepared for my life to be in the hands of some scientists who have not just researched what they are going to try but made it public for further scrutiny. That is far preferable to putting our lives in the hands of the naysayers and Doomsday believers out there. Roll on Wednesday when either science is advance a little, nothing happens or we all die. Two out of three are pretty exciting options so I like those odds!

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