Should Daylight Saving Time Become Permanent? | Aaron Neuman

The debate over whether Daylight Saving Time should be made permanent has been raging for quite a while now.

Moving the clock forwards and backwards at different times of the year was first proposed by Benjamin Franklin in 1784 and first went into practice in the United States in 1918. The point of doing this was to help the country conserve energy; more daylight hours meant less electricity being used to power homes in the hot summer months.

But now, calls are growing to make Daylight Saving Time permanent, and a group of US senators have introduced a bill to accomplish just that.

Arguing that “extra sunshine in the evenings not only puts a spring in our step and offers the perfect reason to get outside, but it also positively impacts consumer spending and shifts energy consumption,” the senators say their Sunshine Protection Act would make it unnecessary to change our clocks twice a year.

“Studies have found year-round Daylight Saving Time would improve public health, public safety, and mental health — especially important during this cold and dark COVID winter,” Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey said.

It is true that making Daylight Saving Time permanent could help avoid physical and mental health issues that arise biannually after we change our clocks and it would likely help us conserve energy. In fact, when the US extended Daylight Saving Time by 4 weeks in 2005, American household saved a slight amount of energy. And a 2019 medical study found that changing the clocks is directly correlated with an increase in heart attacks, strokes, and other medical problems.

But making Daylight Saving Time permanent comes with its own issues. For one, children would literally be going to school in the dark in the winter months. We would have to send our kids to wait at bus stops quite literally before the sun rises. That is not exactly safe.

Secondly, a permanent Daylight Saving Time would cause serious issues for bnei torah. In the winter months, vasikin minyanim wouldn’t be able to take place until after 8 AM! There is just no way working people with 9-5 jobs can manage that.

In conclusion, making Daylight Saving Time permanent has some benefits and some drawbacks. Does the good outweigh the bad? You decide.

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  1. I remember during the 1973-74 Energy Crisis / Arab Oil Embargo the US never switched back to Eastern Standard Time that winter which had caused a terrible tragedy of children waiting for the school bus in the dark morning.
    I would say to leave it as is; to switch back to eastern standard time every November.

  2. In January of 1974 the U.S. enacted an energy saving law that started daylight saving time early and would continue it through the entire 1974-1975 winter. By October 1974 there were enough irate parents complaining of sending their schoolchildren out in the dark mornings that the extension of Daylight Savings Time was repealed.

  3. Why take on something that’s fake? Standard Time (GMT -5) is real robe in the Eastern Time Zone. the argument should not be forged going to savings time, it should be for standard time, aka GMT -5.

    Personally I think all these arguments are ridiculous. Just keep it in stopping so childish. I would even say make the time change more in line what it used to be – April and October.

    • GMT is just as fake as DST. There is no spot in the world where the day truly begins, just an agreement by the world that it should be in Greenwich. Arbitrarily agreeing on a local change brings benefits and drawbacks to its residents, so this is a legitimate debate.

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