Friday, January 14, 2011

APOCALYPSE NOW: When carp fly and birds fall from the sky! A twitterbrain nation speaks.

An Asian carp 'flys' over startled derby oganizer Betty Deford in Bath, Illinois: photo by Jonathan Schechter

Twitterbrain Fools in a Facebook Nation!  That's what I am beginning to think we are becoming. Some of us already have made that transformation with all  'news' coming from Facebook and Twitter.  And "we" and "us" includes more than a few in the national media.  Are we just a nation of fearful sloths that know nothing of science and the reality of nature's way on Planet Earth?

  Fox News reported the mass casuality of 5,000 red-winged blackbirds falling from the sky on New Years Eve in Arkansas as "Near Apocalyptical" Oh please!  And then when I jumped to CNN for what I expected would be a saner read of the facts, I found Anderson Cooper acting like a bird brain with his Kirk Cameron interview. Cameron's creditionals for the dead birds on the road  interview?  He had starred in the evangelical movie "Left Behind" which was concerned with  End Time beliefs!    To Cameron's credit he quickly pointed out to Cooper that he did  not see any prophetic messages and suggested Cooper talk with veterinarians.  Well said.
Two points for Cameron.
Zero for Cooper.

Enter self proclaimed ultra-conservative prophet Cindy Jones: And better sit down for this one! She actually got airtime on several networks to proclaim that birds falling from the sky were God's warning to us that marriage is between one man and one woman and the dying birds showed God's displeasure on the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell.  I've got real trouble connecting the dots with her rambling lack of any logic, but then again I don't get excited about prophets of doom, Nostradamus and the 2012 END. 
 I am rather biased towards a seven letter word:  SCIENCE.

Quirks of nature and mass animal deaths are nothing new. And you won't find a scientist or naturalist anywhere that has  pushed the panic button on the falling red-wings.  Most scientists concur that they were startled into night flight and encountered solid objects or perhaps suffered trauma from a lightning bolt concussion.    But if someone wants to find a message from the heavens in the birds falling from the sky--so be it.  But I pose a question to them: What is the message from the heavens in the carp that fly and leap out of the Mississippi River and connected waterways?  An event I witnessed during my crazed participation in the Red Neck Fishing Derby last summer. But maybe there was a message to me that I missed when several slammed into my neck and chest.  I just fished on.

Asian carp rockets out of water and hits my shoulder: photo credit: Kevin Fowler

Prophet of Doom?  A red-winged blackbird just perched and doing nothing. 


Anonymous ML said...

Perhaps these people have too much time on their hands. Great article Jonathan!

January 14, 2011 at 10:31 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whew! I was starting to get tired of all the doomsday news reports. The sky is falling, the sky is falling!! Thanks for a rational view on this Jonathan!

January 14, 2011 at 10:49 AM 
Blogger victoria said...

Many good points made Jonathan.

I think of myself as a fairly intelligent reasonable thinker, but however crazy it sounds I do think that society in general has gone beyond safe limits and I don't think it is too heinous that an apocalypse (possibly nuclear war) is right around the corner if people don't finally get it.

Red-winged blackbirds, Carp.. if it scares people into taking a good look at where they are heading I am all for it.

January 14, 2011 at 5:33 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good column! Am I allowed to say "amen"?

January 14, 2011 at 7:47 PM 

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