Scott Tibbs

Do not make Daylight Saving permanent. Abolish it.

By Scott Tibbs, March 25, 2022

Sunrise in Bloomington, Indiana on December 20 of last year was 8:02 a.m. Thanks to the United States Senate voting to make Daylight Saving Time mandatory all year long, sunrise on the same day in 2023 will be at 9:00 am, meaning that primary school students as young as five years old will be waiting in the dark for the bus more than two hours before sunrise.

This will also increase the risk of traffic accidents in the morning. While more light during the the evening commute may decrease accidents in the evening, the problem in the mornings is snow and ice on the roads - a problem that sunlight is very helpful at mitigating.

Furthermore, forcing people to get up a full hour before their bodies would naturally wake up is likely to have negative consequences for people's health. As we saw during the COVID-19 pandemic, overall health has a significant impact in people's ability to fight off disease, and making DST last through winter could very well make people more vulnerable to respiratory viruses during cold and flu season.

The rhetoric about more evening sunlight is laughable. The federal government cannot add one single second of extra sunlight. They can only mess with the official time and take away time with sunlight in the morning. If it is so important to have a little extra time in the sun during the summer, businesses can change hours or offer more flexible hours to allow employees to benefit from it.

It is especially disappointing to see every single Republican, including self-proclaimed constitutional conservatives, support a national change like this. Daylight Saving Time has previously been decided on a state-by-state basis. That is why it was a big deal when Indiana, one of the last two states that was not on DST, voted to move to switching times during Mitch Daniels' first term as governor. This is yet another expansion of federal power at the expense of the states. This is a very anti-conservative position.

A better solution would be to abolish Daylight Saving Time completely. This innovation has only been around for about 100 years, and the world somehow managed to operate before we started artificially changing the clocks in 1918. The drawbacks to DST outweigh the benefits to keeping it.

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