In response to last week’s piece about “Ending Daylight Savings,” I have been very disturbed that the Senate passed a resolution to remain on Daylight Savings Time year-round (not to end it, as was stated). Along with most other folks, I have for many years been frustrated with the annual time changes. However, we should be staying on standard time if we’re going to stop changing the clocks.
We have tried year-round daylight time in 1974, in the interest of saving energy, and it was a disaster. The thought was that it would save energy to have “more daylight.” Unfortunately, for many states in the country, this means that it would not get light until 8 or even 9 a.m. in the winter. I personally find it hard enough to get moving in the winter when it doesn’t get light until 7:30 or 8 a.m.. It will be even harder at 8:30 or 9 a.m.
Our bodies have evolved to synchronize with the sun. Standard time is closest to Solar time (noon is when the sun is basically overhead). Daylight Time leads to artificial social time (additional hour in the evening). Our bodies struggle to catch up with sun time, creating what’s called “Social Jet Lag.” Our bodies already want to follow the sun; our clocks should do the same.
Sleep experts tell us that morning light is essential to healthy sleep rhythms, and our circadian rhythms—especially for teenagers. Teens’ circadian rhythms shift back an hour or so, and year-round DT will be like asking them to get up at their biological 3 a.m. For all of us, disruption of these rhythms and loss of morning daylight can result in depression, SAD, increased traffic accidents, obesity and heart disease. For this, and other reasons (per studies), THIS IS A BAD IDEA!!!
The illusion is that by doing this we “gain” an hour of daylight (Ms. Ashley wrote that daylight time is “the schedule that gives longer hours”)! That is essentially doublespeak. There is the same amount of daylight no matter what time we choose to set our clocks.
Even switching back and forth (as we do now) would be preferable to year ‘round daylight time as far as I am concerned.