There has been a lot of talk about Daylight Savings Time lately, but I only have one question: Who does a guy have to bribe around here to get rid of it? [political snark] I’m looking at you, Kathleen Wynne [/political snark]
The concept of DST has been around for centuries, with one notable Englishman pushing for it quite heavily at the turn of the century (the previous century, for all you millennials thinking about 15 years ago). It wasn’t until WWI, in an effort to conserve energy and keep people from wasting those precious early daylight moments, that it established a stronghold on Europe and North America.
Every year around this time articles start popping up about the effects of DST on the people. Trust me, it’s a real thing. I’ve been suffering from insomnia for years and am basically a (reasonably) high functioning idiot. Anyone with children also knows what kind of havoc DST can have on a sleep schedule, but it’s more than just about giving up an hour of sleep. Daylight Savings Time is almost 100 years old. This concept was conceived before there was widespread electric light and it was propped up by an energy crisis more than 40 years ago. If there’s a better example of doing something “because that’s the way it was always done” I have yet to find it. It’s archaic, and it’s pathetic.
I used to think it needed to be an all or nothing sort of thing but take a look at this map:
Blue represents places that use DST and red the places that never have (and presumably never will). The orange parts are all the places that used to implement DST but chose to stop. So it can be done. It HAS been done – many times – and even from states / provinces / territories within the same country, and regions within those!
We are beyond needing that daylight to save coal or “conserve energy”. The world has fantastic ways of conserving energy ALL THE TIME, not just at some ungodly hour of the morning. And don’t tell me that the golfers like it because they can play longer. No one gives a shit about whether or not they can get in 4 more holes. No one.
“It will cost so much to fix it!” people will say. No it won’t. Estimations for what DST costs us every year are astronomical. Plus, anywhere that uses it already has mechanisms in place to handle switching it back and forth. Just “forgetting” to keep switching it is a trivial exercise when you compare it to something like, oh I don’t know, changing the dates on which the change occurs.
So what’s the problem? Why can’t we change? It’s as if there is a collection of nations out there all getting dressed in the morning and putting on the latest trend in clothing and calling each other to make sure their outfit meets with everyone’s approval. International time management powered by peer pressure. At this point there’s a greater chance the United States will switch over to the metric system, but that’s a rant for another day.
All I know is I want it to stop.
Please make it stop.
- Tips on coping with Daylight Savings Time:
- A few facts: