Say what you will about his failed Doomsday predictions, Harold Camping makes for fascinating theatre. As I wrote in my column just before Judgment Day (http://www.stratfordstar.com/opinion/my-voice/walshs-wonderings/69116-sign-of-the-end-times.html), Harold has a very healthy belief in himself—track record be damned. He’s even managed to kick it up a notch since emerging from his hobbit hole, declaring that he was right all along—lack of Rapture be damned. Turns out we’re still on for the End of Times on October 21, 2011—especially the damned.
Asked for a comment by the International Business Times on May 21 after (surprise) he was still eartbound, Camping opened his door in a Members Only jacket (he has to be the sole surviving member at this point) and asked “Just give me a day. This is a big deal, and I gotta live with… I gotta think it out.”
Addressing the media from his studios on May 23, Camping said, “If people want me to apologize I can apologize (Author’s Note: that’s not an apology). Yes, I did not have all of that worked out as accurately as I should have, or wished I could have, but that doesn’t bother me at all because I’m not a genius.”
Not a genius? Hush your mouth! You just managed to fake an apology while deploying the “I’m only human” defense for taking on the superhuman task of being God’s public relations rep. Even better, he went on to say that he really wasn’t wrong at all. He said the Rapture was to be understood spiritually, not physically. “The sense of it is still the same, that Judgment has come, that we are now under judgment where it was not prior to May 21st. Spiritually there’s a big difference in the world that we can’t detect with our eyes.”
In other words, the election results aren’t in, but all the precincts are closed. We’re just waiting for the final tally. Want proof? Well, you can’t see it with your eyes, silly, so… no. No proof for you. Instead, his Family Radio empire touts his new slogan, “We are almost there.” It reminds me of my dad as he packed my family in the station wagon for a 12-hour trek to Ohio. We’d whine, “Are we almost there, yet?” and he’d answer, “Yes.” Then we’d be in the car another four hours.
We’re in for a long ride, folks, and Harold is just ramping up. On May 3, 2009, Harold addressed a packed gym of about, oh, 24 people about Judgment Day. He spoke of carcasses being thrown into the streets and desecrated because they are under the wrath of God—who knew how excited folks would be to finally get to desecrate bodies?
Some of you might be wondering, “Why us? Why now?” First of all, quit your whining—we’re almost there. Secondly, we are being punished more than the folks from the previous 13,000 years because we were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Sorry.
These are the drawbacks of being a one-man show: lone rangers have a higher probability of failure. In fact, Family Radio employee Matt Tuter told the Christian Post that Camping has actually predicted the world’s end at least ten times. Most of those predictions weren’t made public, and Tuter has pushed some would-be donors not to contribute.
Don’t worry, though, because it looks like everything is back to normal. The Family Radio website that had hosted a giant countdown to the Rapture (along with several “proofs” of our impending judgment) has been restored to its former glory. In other words, the donation button is in working order. That’s important, because Family Radio spent $100,000,000 on the billboard campaign for May 21 alone. There’s not a lot of time left to rebuild that war chest for the final ads in October. God doesn’t want us wasting our money on the needy at this juncture, and I don’t think it would “count” anyway. The polls are already closed, remember?
Now Harold can move on to the business at hand: scaring the crap out of people based on numbers he’s derived through a fantasy reading of Scripture and a pair of old Yahtzee dice. He still needs to figure out what time zone God uses, for instance. Oh, and he needs a better motel to hide in with his wife next time come October 22nd.
Regardless, all of this just further proves my long-held theory: never trust an old man with long fingernails.