Daylight Savings Time: Let’s get rid of it!

The Party is over, Daylight savings time is back in the United States.

We had a brief reprieve, like a condemned criminal spared for a moment from trudging off to the gallows. But now it’s time to face the music: good citizens all across the country will “spring forward,” turning their clocks ahead tonight, and wake up tomorrow morning with one less hour of sleep.

Daylight Savings time is such a hassle. It’s just not worth the trouble. The readjustment period to the new time can be exhausting, and it’s even dangerous. We should get rid of this useless practice, and never look back.

It was originally proposed, early in the twentieth century, as a way to utilize more natural daylight, and cut electricity costs. But in our modern world, we run electrical devices nearly 24/7, so savings are negligible at best. And the aggravation of resetting all of our clocks twice a year is reason enough to drop the practice.

Who has the energy and inclination to waste time this way? And there’s always a clock or two that’s tricky to change; my car’s clock is like that, if I ever get around to bothering with it. Sometimes it’s even dangerous, like if you have to climb a ladder, for example.

There’s even medical research that changing the clocks can increase the frequency of heart attacks. But why is that? It’s because you  effectively lose an hour of sleep in the spring, when you set the clocks ahead. If you wake up at 5:00 am, then you are effectively waking up at 4:00 am, until your body readjusts to the new schedule (which may take several days). This wreaks havoc with the body’s circadian rhythm, our natural biological clock. Some even feel we lose 210 to 240 hours thanks to this disruption, over time.

This is stressful, since it interferes with the natural circadian rhythm of your body. And for people with health risk factors, it’s bad news. Even if you have the discipline and foresight to retire an hour earlier the night before, it still adds unhealthy stress.

Many countries have rejected daylight savings time, seeing no clear benefits, and many obvious drawbacks. I hope the United States joins their ranks!

Daylight Savings: it’s time has come, and gone (The Verge)


Photo: Alan Cleaver • CC BY 2.0