Retire daylight savings


Art by Julia Belew

Heather Teague, Staff Writer

Daylight saving time is just around the corner again, but perhaps it shouldn’t be. Albert Einstein said, “Time is an illusion.” An eight-year-old me running late for school in the abnormally black hour of a March morning would have certainly agreed with this. I hated daylight saving time for making me leave the warm embrace of my fluffy kitty blanket just to sleepily stumble off to school.

While my class had not yet studied Einstein and his famous phrase, we had studied Benjamin Franklin, who truly believed it when he himself stated, “Time is money.”

In fact, National Geographic stated that Franklin had once suggested starting something like daylight saving time in the United States to save money because the longer (brighter) evening hours would cut back on energy usage. However, this “energy saving” is practically nonexistent in modern times.

Environmental economist Hendrick Wolf found that the high use of air conditioning and the increasing amount of time Americans spend on the road actually counteract any initial decrease in energy consumption. Sounds like a better saying would be “Time spends money.”

As if that isn’t enough, the time switch also negatively impacts health. According to NBC News, “A 2014 U.S. study showed one hour of sleep during the ‘spring forward’ to daylight saving time raised the risk of having a heart attack the following Monday by 24 percent compared to other Mondays during the year.”

Mental health can be damaged by daylight saving time as well. According to, having to adjust to the “fall” back can worsen depression and bipolar disorder

Interestingly enough, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s website stated that the House State Planning and Community Affairs Committee has also taken notice of the spike in accidents associated with the time change and how unhappy many Georgia residents are with the practice. So many, in fact, have voiced their criticisms of daylight saving time that it may soon be possible to vote yay or nay on its continuance in the state under House Bill 709. Voters would have several options: keep daylight saving time the way it is, switch to year-round daylight saving or completely do away with it.

So, daylight saving time: a financial failure, a health hazard and a gigantic wedge between me and my literal dreams. Maybe the emphasis we as a society put on controlling time should be placed elsewhere. Why shouldn’t we want to live happier, longer, well-rested lives? After all, a smaller number on the clock is not nearly as important as being able to wake up, take a deep breath, and turn a good night’s sleep into a productive day.

Sorry, Franklin. I’m with Einstein on this one.

Soap Box
By Heather Teague
Staff Writer