Too Convinced of Our Own Permanence

It really surprises me how oblivious most people are to our dire situation. Between the insane twitterings of the man we chose to lead the free world, the nuclear saber rattling, the imminent environmental disaster that we have brought upon ourselves and yet seem content to ignore, and the ever-increasing worldwide paranoia, the Doomsday Clock ticks on.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Doomsday Clock, it’s basically a unit of measure that has been maintained by the members of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ Science and Security Board. They’ve kept adjusting this measurement, back and forth, as circumstances have dictated, since 1947. Originally their calculations were based solely on the threat of global nuclear annihilation, but in recent years they’ve also taken climate change into account.

The clock is now set at two minutes to midnight. Only once since 1947 have we been so close to the end. That was in 1953, when the US and the USSR were testing our first thermonuclear devices.

This is a big deal. And yet no one seems to care. It’s time to wake up.

We all make fun of teenagers for thinking that they’re immortal and for taking risks that no sane adult would ever contemplate. But the truth is that we all think there is some sort of permanence to humanity. We don’t really believe that anything we could do could cause the end of life on this planet. Not really. And because of this, we are taking stupid, teen-aged risks.

Tick tock, people.

Doomsday Clock

A big thanks to StoryCorps for inspiring this blog and my first book. http://amzn.to/2mlPVh5

4 thoughts on “Too Convinced of Our Own Permanence

  1. lyn sutton

    The first thing I did after the 2016 election was visit that site and have revisited more often since. My first visit was to research damage from the Fukushima accident, which is far from over.
    Never been in denial of the ticking clock of mortality inching towards midnight, but an unhealthy fear leads deniers to do the very thing that will hasten it; ignore the facts. It’s an infectious disease that needs a vaccine to balance fear with a boost of courage.

      1. lyn sutton

        Thanks Barb, but you already cover the relevant and sometimes bizarre topics so powerfully. My comments are mostly meant to support your views and let you know you’re being heard, understood, and appreciated. Also I’m terrible at the grammar and punctuation side of it and would need to hire someone to edit for me. 🙂

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