Can someone explain to me the point of Daylight Savings Time (DST)? It has got to be the most pointless ritual in modern times.
I grew up in Arizona, where DST is not practiced. I had no idea what the rest of you put up with for no apparent reason until I moved to Seattle. Every year in March...or is it April?...I lose an hour of sleep and it takes at least two weeks for my body to readjust. I screw up some appointment on the Sunday the clocks get turned back, wait no, ahead.
Then there's the fact that DST exacerbates the main downside of living in Seattle: the lack of sunlight. Turning the clock back means our sunset gets moved from 5pm to 4pm through December and January. Those of you rolling your eyes just don't appreciate how much that hour of sun can do to a person. Let's be honest, we all care about sunset than sunrise (when most of us are still asleep). Seattle has a notorious suicide rate, and the highest incidence of MS in the country...could it be the lack of Vitamin D?
All of the theories behind DST fall flat on one basic premise: if it's good to extend daylight, then it's not good to limit it. If anything, the order of things should be reversed so the daylight hours are steadier throughout the year. By falling ahead and springing back, the sunset would be closer to the same time all year. Sure, someone would have to come up with a new catchy phrase to remember what to do but otherwise, why isn't it done that way?
According to Wikipedia, the man we can thank for proposing modern DST didn't like cutting his golf game short due to dusk after taking an afternoon nap. This is why he wanted summer clocks pushed ahead. Does William Willett represent a large swath of the population?
On further research, it appears we can thank lobbyists for big business (retail and sports, mostly) for making DST a permanent part of life for most Americans in 1966, after being softened on the idea through a few short-lived trials during wartime earlier in the century. Which means it's all part of the military-industrial complex. I knew it!
Some folks in Seattle actually like DST, because it means sunset doesn't come until about 9pm in July. These are usually the northwestern folks who enjoy composting, but their opinion counts too! For this reason, my preferred solution is to leave the clocks as is, and never fall back again. Besides, all of the 'pros' for DST, if true, means we're choosing to only enjoy those perks half of the year.
So who's with me?