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Daylight Savings isn't for the farmers.


Artwork by Martha Argelia. Good Baggage. 2019.

Ready to be mind blown? Daylight Savings Day, when twice a year we're required to change our clocks and dive into a time-warping adventure, isn't for the farmers. The day that feels like a cosmic conspiracy as we actually move through it--possibly making us late for something. One thing we know for sure, everything falls back or springs forward exactly the way it should, except for the microwave, coffeemaker, and my Swatch watch.


Daylight Savings Time was introduced during World War I by President Woodrow Wilson when he signed the Standard Time Act into law under the premise that additional daylight hours could cut energy costs during World War I. Daylight Savings was later revived during World War II and aimed to conserve energy and resources during those tumultuous times. By shifting our clocks, we maximize daylight hours, reducing the need for artificial lighting and saving energy.


I was today years old when I learned that Daylight Savings ISN'T FOR THE FARMERS!

In fact, organizations in the agricultural industry tried their hardest to prevent the bill from passing! They were against...against, daylight savings. Farmers only came into the story because they were against daylight savings. Not because they needed more sunlight for harvesting. In fact, farmers tried to block what was known as the Standard Time Act (they actually lobbied quite heavily) because this longer daytime would mean unnecessary discomfort from working longer daytime hours under the sun.


Mind blown that Daylight Savings Time isn't for the farmers

Also, in 1918, Germany was the first country to observe daylight savings to conserve fuel. One more thing, the person who came up with the idea of manipulating time to save energy was Benjamin Franklin. He told the powers in Paris that Parisians would save a lot of money on candles if they got up earlier in the morning rather than sleeping until late in the day. Hi Paris, now you know who to blame for losing beauty sleep time--and your obsession with cigarettes (maybe).


Back then, it was to save energy and money, now Daylight Savings is more for planet-saving reasons--if we use less energy, we burn less fuel, all leading to less pollution. Hence, the "savings" in Daylight Savings--then and now.


So, should we get rid of Daylight Savings? There are compelling reasons not to pull the plug entirely. Beyond energy conservation, it's an economic boon for many industries. Longer daylight hours mean more shopping, dining, and recreational activities, which benefit local businesses and our overall economy.


I have a feeling we're stuck with Daylight Savings for some time. And to be honest, it doesn't really bother me. I love the darker skies in the fall and winter and enjoy walking in prolonged sunshine in the spring, but I can see how it would be inconvenient for some people. I mean, loss of sleep is something to cry about.


For now, try to find the little moments of joy to go along with the little moments of annoyance that come with falling back (and if you're reading this in the spring, the ones that come with springing forward).


Boom.


Peace,

Martha


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