We're now three weeks into 2013, and a month past the date when, so any number of strange people said, we'd see the beginning of the end of the world. Some months ago we documented how two of those strange people -- Thomas Horn and Cris Putnam -- made an especially loud (but especially weak) case for 2012 being the Year of Heading for the Hills. Horn in particular seemed intent upon the idea that it was the year that the old pagan deities like Quetzalcoatl would gallop in through the stargates and start using us humans as Purina God Chow.
So anyway, now I have a question:
Where's their apology and retraction?
You won't find one on their websites. Putnam's blog so far this year has entries plugging the duo’s new tome of lunacy, which claims that the Vatican is preparing us to accept aliens as saviors, plus a couple of entries about other issues. But as for the 2012 blunder, it may as well be that we skipped from 2011 right to 2013.
Horn has a presence on more than one website, but the two most prominent -- a news website, and his "survivalist" supply website -- don't offer a clue that the basis upon which Horn sold surfers his wares has passed without so much as a whimper. One of them is also plugging the same nutty new book about aliens, as well as announcing a new prophecy conference for 2013. One wonders when they planned this one – if they did so before the end of the last year, what would that say about what they really believed?
Obviously I'm being facetious to make a point. It took Harold Camping decades to man up and make an apology for his blunders, though he had the advantage of multiple dates he could hang his hat on in order to kick the can; Horn and Putnam don't. Edgar Whisenant was able to extend his warnings a year, strain them even more -- but did he apologize, much less issue a refund to everyone who bought his 88 Reason tome? Perish the thought. John Hagee kept shifting the goalposts when his setups failed. So does Hal Lindsey. And yet the church keeps supporting them with book sales and television time.
What ranks as most pathetic here is that no doubt there were many who became Christians on the strength of alleged "end of it all" predictions. It certainly happened with Whisenant and Camping; perhaps it happened less so with Horn and Putnam -- for after all, they were more clearly loony than those past names. Even so, you don't need imagination to follow the potential paths: Disillusion, cognitive dissonance, perhaps even apostasy, and the perpetuating cycle that also involves.
Once again, if you ever wonder why I'm so hard on these sort of people...once again, you know.