12-21-12: Horror or Hoax?

By Jeff Neumeyer

December 18, 2012 Updated Dec 18, 2012 at 7:03 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) --- Less than three days until doomsday prophets say the world could be ending.

It’s a story about the approach of "12-21-12", and whether there's reason to feel afraid.

It was 1987 when American rock band “r.e.m.” released the hit single, "It's the End of the World as We Know It. (And I Feel Fine).”

Doomsayers are indeed convinced December 21st 2012 could be a day of death and destruction.

" Some folks I've met with have liquidated their assets," said Fort Wayne psychologist Dr. Stephen Ross, who has clients who call themselves “preppers”, stockpiling food and other supplies in case the big day turns ugly.

Dr. Ross counsels that their fears are unfounded, and that they can have a domino effect.

" Kids living in the home, if they're hearing that December 21st is going to be the end of the world...that's going to put them into a frightening state," said Dr. Ross.

Among the apocalyptic ideas is that the earth could be hit by a rapid pole shift, causing earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and tsunamis, and there's the notion that a mysterious “Planet X” will enter the solar system and crash into earth.

NASA says "Chicken Little" should take a holiday.

" This is silly. If there were such an object, anybody could see it. It would be one of the brightest things in the sky," said David Morrison, a senior astrobiologist for NASA.

We contacted Fort Wayne Community Schools.

Officials say the doomsday issue has come up in discussions, but a spokesperson for the district says there's no evidence that a significant number of parents plan to hold their children out of school on Friday, and that kids should realize, like it or not, schools will be open.

The most prevalent end of the world theory has to do with the ancient Mayan civilization, and its long count calendar that ends on December 21st, 2012.

Retired Manchester University Professor Dr. James Adams says recent archeological discoveries indicate the Mayans looked ahead to dates long into the future.

" When 2000 rolled around, many people thought the world was going to end, airplanes were going to fall out of the sky and so forth, that's pretty much the same sort of people who believe the world will end at the end of the 13th Bachtune, but the Maya didn't think that, or at least there's no evidence that they thought that," said Dr. Adams.

" That's great, it starts with an earthquake, birds and snakes and aero planes."

Those are part of the lyrics from the “r.e.m.” hit song, “It’s the End of the World as We Know It”.

Now the big question is, will 12-21-12 prove to be horror or hoax?

We only have to wait until Friday for the answer.

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