Monday, December 26, 2016

Fake News of an Impending Apocalypse? Happy New Year!

Total Eclipse, Mayan Calendar, Y2K, and more.
Doomsday predictions are frequently associated with dates on the calendar, most often at the end of the year or thereabouts. Sometimes apocalypses are expected to accompany phenomena in space like total eclipses, Jupiter aligning with Mars, etc. Consumers love predictions of an apocalypse almost as much as they love celebrity gossip.

For example, December 21st, 2012, was predicted to be an apocalyptic date based on an ancient Mayan calendar. There was great fanfare as the date got closer. No notable events happened that day.
Y2K, January 1, 2000, was the date of another predicted apocalypse. The calendars on much computer software and hardware were not programmed for the year 2000. It was widely anticipated that computers would shut down or malfunction on that date.
  • Aircraft which relied on computers would crash.
  • Stock markets would cease to function.
  • Social security checks would not go out.
Y2K was projected to be the mother of all computer bugs - the end of the world as we knew it. In the years leading up to Y2K, lucrative businesses were built to help other businesses prepare for Y2K. January 1st came and went. Life went on.
People have been predicting end-of-the-world apocalypses for a very long time. Many human beings have a deep-seated belief that something is wrong with the world and that something awful is going to come of that. That’s never going to stop. Well, at least not until one of the predictions comes true.
Every time something in the world changes that groups of people find upsetting, fears of an impending apocalypse are restored  There’s certainly no shortage of apocalyptic predictions related to the election of Donald Trump. His talk of improving nuclear capabilities is troubling to many. However, even in the Age of Trump, the odds are that nothing much will come of predictions that an apocalypse is upon us.

“And you shall hear of wars and rumors of wars: see that you be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.” Matthew 24:6, KJV

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