I’m pretty sure we can all agree that everyone has been talking about it for the last week or so. Yes, yes, according to some calendar created by the Mayan civilization, the world is supposed to end sometime on Friday, December 21st, 2012. Despite mostly universal anxiety over the possibility of it happening, there is not a consensus as to what will happen and precisely when. For example, two particular groups of scientists believe the world will end due to an asteroid or a large solar storm (otherwise known as a solar flare). Others, though, such as David Morrison, an astrobiologist at NASA, are unsure that such a comet or solar storm could occur. Morrison argues that there is no immediate threat in the solar system, such as a comet, that could potentially cause earthly destruction within the next 500 million years. The assumption Morrison makes is that all comets in the solar system that are near the earth have been correctly and adequately tracked. However, being an astrobiologist at NASA, his opinion seems like a believable one. As for a solar storm, Morrison is more open to that possibility (that a solar storm could occur on Friday, December 21st). Morrison, however, debunks this is well, assuring the audience of the website that solar storms do not usually kill millions and at most cause troublesome electrical outages. To top it all off, Morrison refutes the idea that December 21st is a special date, claiming that there is in fact absolutely “nothing special” about it. Perhaps he begins to stereotype a little bit when refers to all believers of an apocalypse in stating that there are “thousands” of people on the internet, who “are not scientists”, who post apocalypse theories. The critical assumption here is that none of the apocalypse believers are credible, knowledgeable scientists.
One of the theories of a possible comet going un-tracked mentioned in the article is that the comet could lose its reflective ice surface, thus becoming dark and untraceable. Once again, Morrison provides evidence to dispute this, saying that NASA has the ability to, and still does, track these kinds of comets using the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory.
Being of a scientific nature myself, I find it hard to believe an apocalypse will really happen. I’m not going to waste time here researching a bunch of data about how comets are not flying towards or earth or how solar storms are really nothing to worry about. Instead, I’m going to look at timely evidence that I think we can all agree on: how the world didn’t end with the Millerites, how the world didn’t end in 1999 despite Nostradamus’s predictions, how the world didn’t end in May 2000 when the planets were supposed to align, how the world didn’t end on 6/6/06. The long story short is that there is absolutely nothing to worry about; there is no more evidence to support this apocalypse as there is to support any previous one.