Prophecies of Doom

When the news broke that Japan’s 2nd nuclear reactor in Fukushima exploded two days ago, a massive wave of text messages, FB status updates and Twitter updates warned Filipinos to brace themselves; stay indoors; seal doors and windows; protect themselves from acid rain — because the radiation from the nuclear explosion would hit Philippine shores within the next few hours. One specific text message that went around even cited that the news had come from BBC News.

Of course none of the warnings were true. Neither CNN, nor BBC, nor even FOX news validated that rumor. In fact, several news items broke a few hours later disputing that any other country would get hit by the radiation.

I’m all for taking precautions against potentially dangerous situations. And I appreciate people’s enthusiasm for spreading the word quickly.

What I don’t appreciate are news being disguised as official news, when they’re nothing but conjecture. If you can spend several pesos sending long text messages about news you aren’t sure of, you can spend a few more pesos checking the Internet for validity of the news being spread.

Especially if the news being spread is one that could potentially spread mass panic.

Much like prophets of doom who foretell that the world truly will end in 2012… with these recent (and still ongoing) earthquakes in Japan to further lend credence to the theory.

Who knows what will happen in 2012? Who knows if the world will truly end?

I suppose it’s the part in me that resists giving in to fate that makes me cringe at prophecies such as this. I like living for the here and now. I like the fact that every minute I’m alive means it’s another chance for me to appreciate being alive. I like the fact that tomorrow is unknown territory. It’s scary in some ways, yes. But it’s also thrilling to think of the possibilities.

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