Okay, can anyone explain to me why Anderson Cooper felt the need to bring on actor and Christian evangelist Kirk Cameron who starred in the Left Behind series to discuss the mysterious bird and fish deaths in Arkansas? I mean seriously Anderson... WTF? I'd like to know what the hell happened there as well, but the last person in the world I can think of that I would hope to get some answers from is this guy.
I guess someone at CNN thinks we haven't quite Jesus'd up our "news" enough already with right wing evangelicals getting some face time on their airways.
BEEBE, Ark. -- The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission says more than 1,000 dead black birds have fallen from the sky in Beebe.
The agency says its enforcement officers began receiving reports about the dead birds about 11:30 p.m. Friday.
Officials say the birds fell over a one-mile area of the city and that no other birds were found outside of that area.
Some of the dead birds will be sent for testing to the state Livestock and Poultry Commission lab and the National Wildlife Health Center lab in Madison, Wisconsin.
Commission ornithologist Karen Rowe says that similar events have occurred elsewhere. In other cases, she says test results "usually were inconclusive," although the birds showed physical trauma. She says the flock could have been hit by lightning or high-altitude hail.
Transcript via CNN below the fold.
COOPER: That's really terrible.
And as if the Arkansas bird drop weren't freakish enough, it came on the heels of a massive fish kill 125 miles away. Tens of thousands of dead fish washed up on the shores of the Arkansas River near Ozark last Thursday. While wildlife experts say the two events are almost certainly unrelated, it's certainly an odd coincidence. The Internet, of course, is now buzzing with other theories. Some people are even saying this is -- these mass deaths are a sign that the end times are near. Some have cited the "Left Behind" series of books.
So we thought we'd talk to actor Kirk Cameron. He's a born-again Christian. He's written a lot about his faith. He also starred in the "Left Behind" series of films. I spoke to him earlier.
COOPER: Kirk, there's a lot of chatter out there on the Internet about these thousands of birds and fish dying. Some people saying this is a sign of the end of days. You obviously starred in a series of films based on the idea of the "Left Behind" series. When you hear that, what do you think?
KIRK CAMERON, ACTOR: Well, I first think that they ought to call a veterinarian, not me. You know, I'm not the religious conspiracy theorist go-to guy particularly. But I think it's -- it's really kind of silly to try to equate birds falling out of the sky with some time -- some kind of an end-times theory.
COOPER: But it is interesting the whole notion of end of times and the whole "Left Behind" series which deals with Jesus coming back to take his people to heaven, the believers and nonbelievers. Why do you think there's such fascination in that and when something like this happens, people kind of turn to those thoughts?
CAMERON: Well, it seems to be that people have a real fascination with the mystery of end-time predictions. Of course, people get all excited about Nostradamus prophecies, 2012, and, of course, biblical prophecy has really been a topic of fascination for thousands of years.
So I think people are trying to -- they love to define codes and signs of future events and see if they can decipher them before anybody else. But birds falling from the sky? That has more to do, I think, with pagan mythology and the way that -- and the directions that the birds flew told some of the followers of those legends that the gods were either pleased or displaced with them. But I think people just have a fascination with the religiously mysterious.
COOPER: Doing the series which are hugely popular, did it change your faith at all? Did it change the way you thought about the idea of the end times or your reading of the Bible in any way?
CAMERON: Well, I've been a Christian for about 20 years. And certainly, there are fascinating passages in the Bible talking about the return of Christ. And people are trying to pinpoint those on a -- in a chronology of events.
But you know what it made me think about, was just the fact that I'm probably going to die of some other cause before this happens. A friend of mine just died yesterday. And what I thought about mostly was the fact that life is short. And I need to be ready whenever it is that God decides to end my life here on earth. And to me, that's -- that's the key.
COOPER: You have a new movie called "Monumental" which is going to be coming out later this year. And it's interesting because it's very -- it seems very timely. I mean, it's very concerned about where America is right now and what you see as a problem in America.
CAMERON; Well, you know, I have six kids, Anderson, and I am very concerned about their future in our country. And I look at it and I think, man, if America is a ship, it looks a lot like it's sinking, financially, morally, spiritually. It's frightening.
And it seems that everyone, religiously, in business and in politics, is playing the blame game. And I want answers.
So I decided to go on a journey and retrace the escape route of the pilgrims. They left us clues to get us back to the real treasure of America and get the ship righted again. And I'm very excited about what I've discovered and I want to unveil it in a documentary this fall called "Monumental."
COOPER: I look forward to it, Kirk. I appreciate you being on. Thank you.
CAMERON: Thank you. Great talking with you.