Daylight savings is outdated and unnecessary and should be eliminated.
Daylight savings was introduced in the early 1900s as a way to maintain more sunlight and work hours, mostly for agricultural and manufacturing purposes, but now that modern work life doesn’t require the use of daylight, daylight savings is obsolete.
Early concepts of daylight savings dating back to the 1700s were supported as a savior of energy and resources, the main resource being candle wax. Considering most modern Americans don’t use candles as primary lighting sources anymore, we don’t need daylight savings for resource preservation.
When it comes to agricultural purposes, I can understand why farmers across the country would want to embrace as much sunshine as possible. Wanting healthy, economically reliable crops is something ideal for all farmers. But between greenhouses, heat lamps, and genetically modified fruits and vegetables, I doubt the modern agriculture industry will suffer much without daylight savings, the big growing corporations specifically. Smaller farms without access to new and improved technology might see some fluctuations in their growth, however, regions of the country that don’t get snow will survive without the extra hour on the clock. An article from History.com even reports that when the time switch was implemented in March 1918, farmers were opposed to the clock changes, simply because their work in the fields was solely based on when the sun was in the sky, not the time.
Every state except Arizona and Hawaii observe daylight savings time, and I honestly think the two states are on the right track. Nobody in Arizona or Hawaii is losing any quality of life or work because of the lack of time changes. Hawaii opted out of the Uniform Time Act in 1967 and Arizona shortly after in 1968 because their geographic relation to the equator caused slim changes in when the sun rises and sets. There is no logical reason for these states to abide by daylight savings, but there should be conversation about neighboring states and how much daylight they actually lose.
There is also the mental health effect the winter seasons take on people across the country. The seasonal depression that hits people in the later months of the year is based around sunset being sooner in the day. When the world around you starts to get dark at 4:00pm but sunset used to be closer to 8:00pm, it can trigger a feeling of getting cut off from your usual day. Everything feels shorter and more stressful when the sunlight is already gone before dinner time. College students with courses later in the day are leaving their classrooms and educational spaces expecting sunshine but being greeted with darkness.
The overall negatives and unnecessary aspects to daylight savings drastically outweigh any considerable benefits. The U.S. should consider eliminating daylight savings. Society would benefit more without it.
Abby Provencal can be contacted at