These days the world is rife with conspiracy theories, modern prophets, messiahs, gurus, and new-age religions, you really don’t know what to believe. I mean, should we believe the media? I know we should be able to and sure, I’d like to! But we’re all human and we just have too many shortcomings – lying and spinning stories to make more sensational news coverage is just one of them.
So with this recent phenomena, this “aflockalypse” if you will, it seems many are having to once again trust their instincts and resist the urge to just believe what’s being fed to them. I honestly believe many are sincere in their promotion of beliefs, theories, and opinions, but first of all, sincerity does not equal truth, and secondly, there are so many differing opinions to choose from, you don’t know where to start.
To recap, here is some factual data – species, locations, dates, and numbers:
(Last week of December, 2010)
- 83,000 dead or dying drum fish washed up along a 20-mile stretch of the Arkansas River.
- 3 to 5,000 red-winged blackbirds literally fell from the sky on New Year’s Eve, in Beebe, Arkansas, about 100 miles east of where the drum fish washed up.
- Between December 28 and January 3, approximately 100 tons of dead fish washed up on the Brazilian coast.
- January 3, over 500 starlings, red-winged blackbirds and sparrows dropped from the sky in Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana, USA.
- January 3, an estimated 2 million dead fish were discovered floating in the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland, USA.
- January 5, hundreds of dead turtle doves were found, Faenza, Italy.
- January 8-9, over a hundred dead birds were discovered clustered together on a California Highway, while thousands of dead gizzard shad (fish) washed up in Chicago.
- January 14, about 200 cows were discovered dead in Stockton, Wisconsin.
- March 7, millions of various small fish including anchovies, sardines, and mackerel were found dead in the King Harbor area, Redondo Beach, California, USA.
So the question that begs to be addressed is, “Is there really any rock-solid, scientific explanation to these mass animal deaths?” Well, in short, not really – although the cause of fish kill has been scientifically narrowed down to several possibilities which I’ve listed below. Many scientists seem to believe that huge die-offs or sudden, mass deaths of animals aren’t all that rare and in fact happen rather regularly. – Potential reasons include:
- Bad weather
- Pollution and climate change
For example, there have been about 90 mass deaths of various birds and wildlife from June to the 12th of December recorded by the U.S. Geological Service, and there have apparently been 16 similar blackbird deaths in the past 30 years according to Louisiana’s State Wildlife Veterinarian, Jim LaCour. You mean to tell me that they’ve been happening for quite some time? Hmm, well that changes things a tad doesn’t it?
Ok, to sum it all up, we have uber-huge quantities of dead things, presumably all of whom were at some point, normal, healthy, living creatures – and then something happens. Perhaps one of the aforementioned reasons above befell them and simply took them out. It’s not at all beyond logic for some kind of disease or even man-made poison to enter – or God-forbid, be injected into – the food chain at some point and exact a sudden and violent blow on an unsuspecting species.
On the flip-side of the coin, we have our ever-present doomsday and conspiracy theorists, who energetically exercise their freedom of speech and religion with their cries of woe and shouts to “repent” and such. (Well, honestly, some of us actually do need to repent.) Many of these people believe such events are heralding ‘the end of the world’, with some Christians relating these events to the passage in the Bible – Hosea 4:2, 3 – that reads:
“By swearing, and lying, and killing, and stealing, and committing adultery, they break out, and blood toucheth blood. Therefore shall the land mourn, and every one that dwelleth therein shall languish, with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven; yea, the fishes of the sea also shall be taken away.”
Upon reading that verse, it might be easy to deduce that there’s not a whole lot of room for differing interpretation. You swear, lie, murder, steal, and commit adultery – you pay the consequences. More specifically, your crops fail and various living things around you start dying. Now what exactly that means for us today, beyond the “in your face” message it contains, I’m not sure. Dudes have been up to that sorta mischief for millennia!
I believe religion has its place – as does free speech of any kind – but we must be ‘sober and vigilant’ in how we interpret “The Word”. Jumping to scriptural conclusions at the expense of the stepping stones of science is not wise. There may be a parallel, there may not. Albert Einstein said: “Science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind.” One must decide for himself after all viable angles have been studied.
“When you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”