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. ninehorse

    I use to be mixed up on drugs, now I'm mixed up on the Lord.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:13 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Cricket

    @George Patton

    Good. We got that going for us, at least!

    May 18, 2011 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Van

    Sweet, I have so much homework I don't know what to do with it.
    Seriously though, the Bible says no one knows when God is coming back, so I don't know why these predictions are always cropping up with people believing it.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andfol91

      What can I say finally someone has some sense through all this...

      May 18, 2011 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
  4. im 2 cute

    Sooo i can eat all the lasagna i want?!

    May 18, 2011 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. bobincr

    3 days left! Holy cow, I'm going to the grocery store and buy out all the Little Debbie snack treats, ALL the Hostess Cupcakes and about 20 packages of Oreos! Then I'm going to the Dairy Queen and order 20 double chocolate shakes and head for home! If the Lord doesn't come on Saturday, camping OWES me for all this and a year at a work out clinic! Come, Lord Jesus!

    May 18, 2011 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. E N Gore

    Does any know that "apocalypse" also means "revelation"? Perhaps the "End of the World" is just a metaphorical way of saying an enlightning change is comming. It would be as they say, "The end of the world as we 'know' it". As we think the world to be.

    Just some optimisim.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Bruce

    He is right! However, the way he stumbled upon the date is wrong. Here is the proper way to get the exact date and time of the “RAPTURE”. (Queue imposing music) Okay, here goes nothing!
    A New King James Version (NKJV) can have from 1190-1701 pages depending on if it has a concordance and/or study guides in it. The difference equals 511. 511+12 (the number of original disciples = 523 + 1 (Jesus) that makes the total 524. Now subtract the number 3 (trinity) you get 521 or 5/21.
    The number 666 represents the number of the beast, if you subtract 66 (total of 66 books in the bible) you get 600 or 6:00. (A.M. or P.M. doesn’t matter, but let us go with P.M. I want to sleep in!)
    Now for the year! His last prediction for the rapture was in 1994 + the whack jobs age (89) – 8 + 9 or his magic number of 17. What do you get? Wait for it…wait for it… 2011! So therefore he must be right. (Thinly veiled sarcasm)

    Now send all your money to me, or donate to a reputable charity. See you on Monday.
    P.S if I’m wrong… “So long and thanks for all the fish.”

    May 18, 2011 at 9:17 pm | Report abuse |

    RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!!!!!!!!!


    May 18, 2011 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Cricket

    Send all your worldly posessions to:

    J. Cricket
    O.o Foolslane Rd.
    Boyurdumb, OH


    May 18, 2011 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Cricket

    Omg! The Blue Brothers! Yes!!!!

    Thanks, Guest.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Cricket

    Oh, blow me.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • George Patton

      It's one thing to scoff at the doomsayers,but please try to keep the nastyTea Party jokes out of this. You know how these Tea Partiers think.

      May 18, 2011 at 11:36 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Bad

    Are we there, yet?

    May 18, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Guest

    Forgive us for our sins lord. Have mercy on us. Praise be to God. We praise you lord. Praise be to God.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • LOL!

      We have a comedian among us.

      May 18, 2011 at 9:36 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Stephanie

    IIt is simply quite amazing at how much nonsense some will buy into. Who said humans were intelligent? I think not.

    May 18, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
  15. joeTexan

    Is this mean to say I don't have to worry about paying my mortgage???ever???

    May 18, 2011 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
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