2009-02-05 / Opinion

Doomsday in 2012? Don’t hold your breath

My fiancé was browsing around the Internet the other night when she came across something which told us the end of the world is coming and offered a lottery ticket that would allow you to be one of those chosen to survive.

Needless to say, we were amused.

Apparently the ancient Mayan calendar predicts the end of the world on Dec. 21, 2012. This date is also said to be pivotal in other cultures and is looked upon as doomsday by prophets, zealots and others who failed to get enough attention from their mommy when they were growing up.

I mean seriously, wasn’t Jan. 1, 2000 supposed to be the end of the world? Remember Y2K and huge computer crashes predicted across the face of the Earth that were supposed to destroy our society and leave us fighting each other on the highways in souped-up, turbo-charged cars — oh wait, nevermind, that was a movie with Mel Gibson in it. But the point is Y2K never happened. Of course, since private citizens and corporations spent BILLIONS of dollars “fixing” their doomed computers that were all supposed to meltdown at midnight on Jan. 1, 2000, we must have narrowly avoided destruction then.

But now the Mayans have it in for us.

The website we found that foretells the end of the world is for an organization calling itself the Institute for Human Continuity (IHC). It tries to pass itself off as a scientific organization dedicated to saving the human race even though the complete destruction of the world is coming.

Well, it turns out the IHC is nothing but a big joke — a promotional website for a disaster movie coming out that is called “2012.” It is sort of funny, sort of like the whole Martian invaders scare that Orson Welles perpetuated with his “War of the Worlds” radio show back in 1939. The website comes off as real, but you wouldn’t know it was a hoax unless you were to dig deeper.

But there is apparently some basis behind the whole 2012/Mayan calendar theory. People out there actually believe the world will end in that not-so-distant year. Cruising around the Internet checking into the validity of the whole IHC thing, I learned the world is teeming with those who are pretty sure we’re all going to die in 2012.

Our economy has been dramatized to be in chaos, war is spreading our country thin, the Earth is in a state of environmental flux, foreign tension is high and comparisons of America to the fallen Roman Empire are at an all- time high.

For all the worries we have as a country and as earthlings in general right now, I really don’t find myself too preoccupied with worrying about any of them for more than a few seconds. Most of our problems and worries are just periodic or trends: our economy will recover with time and thrift, the war will eventually end and the environment can heal.

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