By Amelia Hamilton

Welcome to Are We Doomed? theweekly column in which I take a look at recent news and try to determine if it’s all downhill from here. 

Oh, Santa

Mariah Carey’s lesser-known Christmas anthem has gotten an update and I am here for it. 

Verdict: Christmas is everything that tells me we’re not doomed. Not just because of Jesus (which, to me, is still some pretty serious not-doomed energy), but because people are just a little bit nicer, take life a little less seriously, and get into really cheesy things like Hallmark movies and this music.

Download now, thank me later

Speaking of Hallmark Christmas movies, my friend and I are obsessed. So obsessed, in fact, that we started “A Very Merry Podcast” to discuss them. Listen and enjoy! 

Sorry about the shameless self-promotion (while we’re at it, buy my American history books for kids here!): it really is a fun show, though! If you’ve never watched a Hallmark movie, listen to the podcast and you’ll understand why they’re so well-loved.

Verdict: It’s OK to enjoy the season even in a really crummy year. It’s the only way to avoid the doom. 

OK, but is is aliens?

Remember last week’s monolith? Well, first it disappeared. Then it (or another one?) reappeared in Romania before disappearing again. 

Verdict: I find it hard to believe this isn’t doom, but I’m gonna try to be positive. 

A Christmas miracle?

“On December 21, Jupiter and Saturn will align so closely in the night sky that they’ll almost appear to collide from our vantage point here on Earth, creating a radiant point of light.” That’s right, for the first time in almost 800 years, we’re getting a Star of Bethlehem

Verdict: I love this so much. We’re not doomed at all, guys. 

Everyone can help

Palma School, a prep school for boys in Salinas, California developed a reading partnership with Soledad State Prison in which groups from these seemingly opposite groups of people would get together to read. After one student’s parents each suffered medical emergencies, they weren’t sure they were going to pay tuition anymore. The inmates raised $30,000 to pay his tuition so he could graduate with his class and attend college in the fall. 

“Regardless of the poor choices that people make, most people want to take part in something good,” said Jason Bryant, a former inmate who was instrumental in launching the scholarship. “Guys were eager to do it.”

Verdict: Every single one of us can make a difference and every one of us needs help sometimes. If we learn from these inmates and help people whenever and however we can, there would be no doom left. 

Isolation is bad, people are good

Regardless of how necessary you consider lockdowns to be, I think we can all agree that humans were not meant to be isolated. Mental health is struggling as people are cut off from friends, family, and community. Asda, a supermarket chain in Britain is doing what they can do help. When shoppers have their groceries delivered they might notice their driver is wearing a pin reading “happy to chat” which lets them know that this person is here for them. They’re happy to sit and have a socially-distanced chat and help break that isolation. 

Verdict: We’re doomed if we forget that mental health matters just like physical health does, but we’re not doomed at all if we take just a moment to remind someone that they are seen and that they matter. 

In the final analysis… That monolith is kind of freaking me out but, overall, this was a pretty solid week. Good job, humanity. 

Want to know if your situation is doomed? Write and tell me about what’s going on and I’ll let you know what you can do to keep the doom at bay (unless it’s just totally doomed, in which case I’ll tell you that, too). You can tweet me @ameliahammy using #AskAmHam, message me through my Facebook page, or e-mail Let me help!