Congratulations, people of Earth. We've pushed back our mutual destruction by one metaphorical minute. On Thursday morning, members of the board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists turned the minute hand on their Doomsday Clock back one minute to 11:54, or six minutes to midnight.
This is a good thing, as we discussed Tuesday, since the clock is supposed to be a metaphor for human devastation. Ostensibly, the closer the hand gets to midnight the closer we are to total annihilation. Gaining a minute indicates that we as a people have collectively acted to delay our inevitable extinction in the past two years, since the hand was last moved. We weren't quite sure how it was going to go this time around.
It's a symbolic gesture, to be sure, but one that carries some weight. With the millions raised so far for victims of the devastating Haiti earthquake taken into account as well it may paint a picture of a positive coming decade. I hope we can keep this up.