Overheard on CNN.com: Scoff and concern for end-of-the-worlders
May 18th, 2011
05:58 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Scoff and concern for end-of-the-worlders

Comment of the day:

"It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine." – Lolita

Tick tock goes the doomsday clock

The beginning of the end of the world, in some people's minds, is near - like this Saturday. According to loyal listeners of Family Radio, founded by Harold Camping and based in Oakland, California, Saturday will usher in the beginning of Judgment Day. They believe a massive worldwide earthquake will strike, leading to five months of death and destruction culminating on October 21, when the Earth will no longer exist.

Some CNN.com readers expressed strong skepticism about the "end of days" prediction, and some felt empathy for the people who have given up their possessions, jobs and family to spread the message.

Acts 2:38 said, "The rapture will NOT take place on May 21st. I feel so bad for the poor people who have bought into Mr. Campings lies." Claymation said, "This Camping fellow knows exactly what he's doing. He's done it all before. The fact is that he's feeding off these people, whether it be for money or fame, he's getting what he wants. May 21st will come and go and he'll say something like, 'Oops, I guess I miss calculated' and change the date." Walt said, "I hope Mr. Campings gets sued by all these people that have been following him. What are these poor people going to do on Monday when they realize they have no jobs, no belongings and probably no money?" Martha said, "I really, really feel sorry for the children of these people who have to spend these next few days terrified of the world ending Saturday evening, and the supposed mechanics of that, and then the issue of how will they will adjust to their reality for years to come."

Other readers found the idea amusing and responded in kind:

Donnie said, "Wow. This is actually good news for me. I've got a bunch of drywall and painting work to finish at the house this weekend, so this will really take a lot off my plate. Thanks God for freeing up my weekends ... FOR ETERNITY!" J said, "If we're supposed to be 'sorted' on the 21st, I hope I’m on Gryffindor!" NB said, "Thank God I'm playing golf on Friday. Maybe I can go out with a round of glory!" D said, "Darn. My End of the World Party doesn't start until 6:30 on Saturday." Jason Goodrich said, "End of The World Parties are always the best. Usually it's on a hurricane day. I hope the weather is good Saturday night." JohnnerMan said, "I'm glad that God acknowledges our (man-made) International Date Line. I wonder if heaven observes daylight savings time?" curleyg said, "I need to know what time Sat. Do I bet the Preakness or not?" Outawork said, "Oh boy!!! Now I don't have to worry about finding a job, but with my luck I'll win the lottery this Saturday." The Jackdaw said, "If this turns out to be true and I don't go to Heaven, I will earn my place in Hell before October." PCollen said, "Have a good flight. BTW, can all you soon to be departers leave me your bank account ID and passwords?" KMAN said, "People! You've got it all wrong! Everybody knows that the world won't end until that fateful day when the Chicago Cubs are one out away from winning the World Series."

Some Christian CNN.com readers who didn't subscribe to the prediction defended their religion:

gmn835 said, "Matthew 24:36 No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. (NIV)" Iago said, "If we Christians everywhere would stop trying to figure out God's plan and concentrate more on being the hands and feet of Jesus by reaching those who are lost, you'll touch more people as opposed to sending out RVs with 'Repent Now ... ' pamphlets and billboards." While Isaac quoted Robert G. Ingersoll –"The inspiration of the bible depends on the ignorance of the person who reads it" - Bob said, "Don't lump all Christian's together. 99% don't think this way." LindaMae said, "No one can be sure when the world will end - we just have to be ready always - start by forgiving yourself and then others. Be at peace with yourself so you won't have to worry when the time comes."

U.S. sanctions target Syrian president, Iranian commanders

President Obama has imposed sanctions against six senior Syrian officials and two Iranian Quds Force commanders in an effort to stop the regime's fierce crackdown on protesters. The effort comes after more than two months of unrest in Syria and reports of hundreds of deaths and thousands of arrests.

CNN.com readers had mixed reactions to the president's action:

Neutronium said, "Sanctions. Let the escalation begin." sammoor said, "Great work President Obama. This regime deserves a shakeup." randypeel said, "Assad Jr. of Syria is worse than Gadhafi of Libya , Mubarak of Egypt , and Ben Ali of Tunisia." Tsimbi7 said, "Sanctions. Never HAVE worked. Never will." RealHist4Me said, "Where are the sanctions for Yemen and Bahrain?" sam9999999 said, "Oh no, sanctions! Not sanctions! Somehow, some way, this will cost us billions."

Goss68 said, "Why aren't we bombing targets in Syria and trying to take out Assad? The situation is much worse than it was in Libya. Assad's regime has killed more than 2000 people since the pro freedom activities started five weeks ago in Syria. That's more casualties than all the other pro-freedom events in Tunisia, Egypt and Lybia combined. Thirty years ago, his father killed over 40 thousand innocent children, women and elderly in the town of Hamma. Jr. will do the same, or worse if not constrained. President Obama, it is time for you to tell Assad to leave power."

justaword said, "Sanctions against another country? Give me a break. It would be nice if Obama focused on real problems facing the US. How about sanctions against our own Congress to get back to work and stop playing politics with our future otherwise the street riots similar to the Middle East are going to begin here in America."

Kevin442 said, "I say that sanctions, done right, are a good, nonviolent way to put pressure on the leaders of Syria. However, I caution that we keep an eye on how it will affect the price of food in Syria. At times, people might bite the hand that feeds them. But they will for a fact rip out the throats of those who starve them. We do not want to be that person."

The game changer: Netflix

Thanks, in part, to the popularity of Netflix, perhaps for the first time in the Internet's history, the largest percentage of its traffic is content that is paid for. Netflix streaming movies now fill more of the U.S.'s Internet tubes than any other service, and streaming real-time entertainment is also on the rise.

Many CNN.com readers posted comments about how Netflix has changed the way they view at-home entertainment.

cobaltblue said, "See what happens when you charge a reasonable price for services? I love my Netflix streaming. Netflix has always been an excellent service and the very few service issues I've experienced have been remedied right away." NSIndiana said, "Netflix unlimited streaming movies/ TV shows = $10/month + Unlimited high speed internet through ATT = $20/month for a total of $30/month. Cable and internet through most providers = $120+ a month. Now I wonder why this is shocking." ExtremePhobi said, "I think the takeaway here is that if you make it affordable, people won't pirate."

toofly said, "I'd be distraught without my Netflix. I like TV shows but there’s nothing worse than watching 20 minutes of commercials in a 60 minute episode just to be left with a cliffhanger you need to wait a week for to see the end. With Netflix you can get rid of all of that." But PCTech714 responded, "I can't believe that in this day and age no one has heard of a DVR. If I want to skip commercials, I push the skip button on my remote and it fast forwards 30 seconds at a time. Usually after a few presses I'm back to the program. As far as cliffhangers go: that's the whole point. Sometimes the "NOW NOW NOW" mentality of this world disturbs me ... "

Do you feel your views align with these commenters' thoughts? Post a comment below or sound off on video

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

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soundoff (385 Responses)
  1. Guest

    There is a reason why we still need to listen to them even it will not happen. I think they just wanted to tell us we need to repent from our sins right away and turn away from our weakedness before it's too late.

    May 18, 2011 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • mb526

      Pffffffffft. I'm having too much fun with mine.

      May 18, 2011 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe

      Yea you are right , you should be the first to repent and stop with your religious propaganda , stop using religion to judge people,

      May 18, 2011 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Timetraveler

      Also, to learn to spell "wickedness". Hint: when you see that red line under the nonsense crap you've typed, it means you can't spell for dick.

      May 18, 2011 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • steve

      ...And there's another reason: PUBLICITY. Look at their website: familyradio.com. Look in the lower right hand corner. 'DONATIONS' – Why the hell are they asking for donations when they claim the world ends on Saturday? You know, some naive people are going to believe this crap which could result in serious repercussions. Did the perpetrators of this hoax ever stop to think of the lawsuits that could result in causing a false panic?

      May 18, 2011 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Think for yourself

    I take it that these people did not stop to think that Harold Camping, at 89 years of age, could be a touch senile?

    May 18, 2011 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. joe


    May 18, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • wzrd1

      I will NOT rum for my life! I'm a whiskey man! 😉

      May 18, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  4. StateOHockey

    I hope they all kill themselves. They're obviously brainwashed and bad for society.

    May 18, 2011 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
  5. April

    its the devil work 🙂

    May 18, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
  6. huh

    I wonder which timezone goes first. Asia experiences the end first?

    May 18, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • wzrd1

      According to those dullards, God is going to start his magic earthquake on the international date line and work it westward, apparently magically forcing the waves west, rather than omnidirectionally as usually occurs. 16 hours later, at 6:30PM, we get it. I guess the west coast magically gets it too or something.

      May 18, 2011 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • flippin

      LOL @ wzrd1!!

      May 19, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  7. M

    Hurry people the end is near. Please post all of your social security numbers, date of birth, race, bank accounts, and pin numbers. Also since the world is ending on the 21st please give me all of your tv's, cars, and cash ect.... if you would like.

    Uhh I will just hold on to that stuff in case the world doesn't end. Yeah right. So just give it all to me and I will keep a close eye on all your stuff. I will have no intentions on keeping your stuff for myself. Nope not at all.

    May 18, 2011 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gahd

      Yeah Im dirt poor for the time being. Where's this Christian charity I keep hearing about?

      May 18, 2011 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hogs4Life

      Most overplayed comment on this board. Seriously, I read this same type of post every 8-10 on here. "Give me all your money" "Give me your car, you wont be needing it". Get a life and be orignal.

      May 18, 2011 at 9:30 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Lulis Leal

    Dang. Imagine being that poor sucker in the picture above, waking up in that ridiculous t-shirt on the 22nd. D'oh!

    May 18, 2011 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  9. evets2010

    I wonder if Jesus is as embarassed for these people as I am? People have been holding up signs saying "the end is near" for many centuries. Blah blah blah.

    May 18, 2011 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  10. joe

    HARLD CAMPING just wabt to get some easy money from people, if the world is ending why he is asking to people that send him money to buy bibles ? you can tell the lie right there, he just want to make a few thousands of dollars from the ignorant religious people and that money will be taxes free like all the money religious and churches get from the religious ignorant people

    May 18, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  11. George Patton

    Judging by some of the scriptures in the Bible,the end of the world may not be so far fetched as one would think. Just look at all the horrific killer weapons our military has today,similar those St. John wrote about in the Book of revelations. So one should think twice about scoffing at the End of the World people.

    May 18, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • wzrd1

      John wrote the book of revelation regarding a human Emperor whose name in Hebrew added to 666, Emperor Nero.
      Indeed, the Nicene Council did NOT want to put that obscure, at the time, book into the bible, Emperor Constantine ordered it included.

      May 18, 2011 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • George Patton

      No wzrd1,when John wrote the Book of Revelations,the Emperor Nero had already been dead for some 20 years. Those horrific images he described match those of our ungodly military weapons such as the "self propelled chariots" spewing fire and the "flying beasts" in the heavens plus "armies the size of many nations" . He must indeed have been horrified at the very vision of sight of what he saw!

      May 18, 2011 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
  12. im 2 cute

    Quakers are freakaay!

    May 18, 2011 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Timetraveler

    When do they roll out the koolaid? That's the best part: watching natural selection at work.

    May 18, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Alverant

    To the people quoting the bible as proof no one knows when the world is going to end, I ask you this; why can't your god change his mind after Mathew and decide to tell his chosen? An omnipotent god cannot be bound by his own words, after all god changed a lot between the old and new testament, so why not change more in the past ~2000 years?

    God is among us right now! He was last seen at a university in Florida being chased by conservatives and having garbage thrown at him in what Mike Huckabee calls "free speech". Guess who's going to be surprised in a few days.

    May 18, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • wzrd1

      What is especially funny is, they relied on a text that was edited for content and version, translated from Hebrew and Greek into Latin, retranslated yet again into Middle English, mistranslating at each stage, yet the math magically works out!
      As rich as the witlesses that go on and on about the King James bible being the TRUE word of God! No WONDER Noah was confused! God spake unto him in Middle English and Noah spoke aramaic.

      May 18, 2011 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Pacific View

    The dateline is a completely arbitrary distinction that did not exist until 1884. Just one slight problem with thier prediction.

    May 18, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • wzrd1

      Apparently, God didn't know that one. Especially as every OTHER biblical prophesy targeted Jerusalem.

      May 18, 2011 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
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