The earth has seen many awful years in its history. A few of the global events caused a significant impact on the population, not to mention eradicating species. Obviously, several of these allowed the planet to survive and evolve and paved the way for humans to emerge. But, perhaps we are just another global evolution away from God’s plan to adjust life.
- Carboniferous Rainforest Collapse
- When: 305 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 10 % of all species on the planet
- The Lau Event
- When: 424 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 30 % of all species on the planet
- Cambrian-Ordovician Extinction Event
- When: 488 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 40 % of all species on the planet
- End-Ediacaran Extinction Event
- When: 542 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 50 %+ of all species on the planet
- Ordovician-Silurian Extinction
- When: 443 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 60 % to 80% of all species on the planet
- Triassic-Jurassic Extinction
- When: 199-215 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 65 % to 80% of all species on the planet
- Late Devonian Extinction
- When: 375-360 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 70 to 75 % of all species on the planet
- Cretaceous-Tertiary Extinction
- When: 65 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 75% of all species on the planet
- Permian-Triassic Extinction
- When: 252 Million Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 90-95 % of all species on the planet
- Great Oxygenation Event (possibly worse than P-T event)
- When: 2.3 Billion Years Ago
- Death Toll Estimate: 90+? of all species on the planet
Granted, these events did not happen in just one year and occurred millions of years ago. Those were global changes that are part of Earth’s evolution to sustain itself. Without these devastating changes, we (humans) would not be here today. Life finds a way to adjust and survive!
In more recent times, we have unfortunately crossed paths with plagues and events that have caused significant deaths and population cuts during human history. Each was devastating to families, communities, countries, and continents.
Some of these events people killing events lasted years, not just in months, but years. Millions of people passed away due to these biblical plagues’ direct impact, mostly because the medical knowledge and science had not evolved enough to combat what we today call simple and treatable diseases such as smallpox.
Is it just me that find it a bizarre coincidence that several global killers emerged from China?
One of the first recording mass pandemic events recorded was documented in China in 3000 B.C., killing off a large region in North-East China. There was no time for proper burials, and mass graves were discovered. Tragic and devastating.
The Black Death, 1346-1353, which we all have heard about during history class, lasted for several years. It traveled from Asia to Europe, following the population expansion, and is estimated to have killed approx. Half of Europe. Again, mass graves were found.
A couple of centuries later, another plague caused havoc in South America, the Cocoliztli epidemic in 1545-1548. Approx. 15 million people were killed was the pest swept across the region.
The plague had a resurgent in various parts of the world, circling the Globe looking for victims. Civilizations crumbled, and science struggled to contain or cure patients. Russia, France, and England had death tolls of 100,000+ people each.
We were introduced to the Flu in the late 1889s and 1890s, again circling and killing people indiscriminately—terrible times with mass graves, fear, and limited science.
In more modern times, we have witnessed terrible diseases that hit our worlds. The Spanish Flu alone killed roughly 100 million people.
The Asian Flu emerged, strongly followed by the Swine Flu H1N1 (Mexico). Let’s not forget the terrible Ebola virus in Africa and Zika virus ravaging South and Central America.
2020 has been married by a new virus, Covid-19 aka Corona, which made its way from China to cover all the Globe countries. The impact has been felt in every family in every country. A virus could not escape, which has unfortunately killed off too many people; family, friends, neighbors, and communities.
Thankfully, we have brilliant first responders and scientists who have fought bravely to protect populations against devastating impacts. In record time, a vaccine has been developed to help combat this awful virus.
Despite our advancements in medical fields, our communities and economies have been devastated. Governments decided to shut down entire countries, hoping to stop the spread of the virus, which in hindside may have slowed the spread. The spread is happening in waves, and we may have spread out these waves over many months, a spread that would have happened naturally.
That said, it is always easy to be clever on the sidelines or after the events have occurred. However, we do have to look in the mirror to assess how governments responded and learn from mistakes to get better at combating similar events in the future.
Throughout the last nine months, from March to December 2020, we all became introverts. Suddenly it was cool to avoid people, something that seriously challenged most families and individuals.
- Companies learned that remote working is doable while maintaining productivity and perhaps even reducing operational overhead costs as they could reduce the rent cost.
- Educational systems attempted to do virtual learning, teach kids remotely, and leverage the great inventions from technologies.
- Medical industries joined forced and fast-tracked treatments and potential vaccines to combat the disease, saving lives.
It has not been easy, and I curse 2020 daily. We all hurl abuse at the calendar and pray that 2020 pass quickly. Some days and weeks were terrible. Some felt like the next level in a video game, while others were a true blessing.
I’m grateful for all the hours I got to spend with my family, traveling within our state (NY), and seeing all the wonders where we live. I’ve strengthened the bonds with my wife and kids, as well as started to improve our house.
I’m truly blessed with having great friends in my life, and we have helped each other through these dark weeks and months with laughter. Without it, it would be a miserable experience.
The best we can hope for now is that 2021 has learned from its mistakes. In all honesty, 2021 only has to do a little better with fewer storms, reducing pandemics, and less political unrest. If 2021 can manage that, 2021 will be an awesome year compared to it’s younger self.
On the flip side, I do remember how insane my 21 birthday was and how much shit can happen in just a few days. Too many bad decisions in a short period of time had ripple effects on the following days and relationships. We must avoid hangovers!
We have to be positive and wish each other a fantastic new year.
Let’s embrace 2021, socially distanced, while we salute our first responders for an awesome job. At the same time, we have to applaud ourselves. Without our determination and perseverance, we would not be here today. The combined hope and prayers have made it possible.