Satire: Permanent daylight saving time could cause a dark American future


Kaelyn Savard

The coming of daylight savings brings a wave of discontent and disgruntled individuals who are robbed of one hour of their day and thrown completely off guard in the days to follow as to how they are to return to their daily routines.

Noelle Villaseñor, Writer

On March 13, 2022, the worst day of the year took place: clocks across the United States (except in Arizona and Hawaii) jumped an hour ahead and switched to daylight saving time, robbing the people of one whole precious hour of sleep. In the few days since then, nightmares have learned how to escape sleep and meander around in the waking world, taking the form of pitch darkness at 7 a.m., battling civilians with the allure of sleep when trying to rise for their daily routines. 

One would think that this horrid regime of waking up when the sky is dark and going to bed when the sun is still high in the sky should be done away with entirely—along with the annoyance of fiddling with every single clock in the house twice a year. A permanent switch to standard time seems like the perfect solution to everyone’s problems. Right?

Wrong. On March 15, 2022, the Senate unanimously passed the Sunshine Protection Act, which, if approved by the House of Representatives and then signed by President Biden, would permanently instate daylight saving time across the US beginning in March 2023. Clearly, this is one of the worst, most unfathomable pieces of legislation passed through Congress in recent years, and even sleep scientists agree. 

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) released a statement in response to the Senate’s passage of the Sunshine Protection Act, cautioning that “making daylight saving time permanent overlooks potential health risks that can be avoided by establishing permanent standard time instead.” According to the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine (JCSM), these potential health risks include, “sleep loss and resultant sleep debt,” which can result in cellular dysfunction, as well as, “a perpetual discrepancy between the innate biological clock and the extrinsic environmental clock.”

Worst of all for students, the JCSM also stated that, “adopting permanent [daylight saving time] also would undo the benefits of delaying start times for middle schools and high schools”—a horrifying concept, considering that California high schools will be required to start at or after 8:30 beginning in the 2022-23 school year.

It makes no logical sense to ignore the cohorts of scientific organizations who all agree that standard time is more biologically sensible than daylight saving time. America’s people asked its government to solve a problem—the annoyance of resetting every clock across the nation twice a year—and they did, just in the exact opposite way that they should have, inevitably making life miserably worse than it was in the first place. 

The Sunshine Protection Act may sound inviting, but its name is ironic considering the dark possibilities its passage could bring. Hopefully, the day will never come when the American people are permanently faced with the dread of alarm clocks ringing while the sun is still asleep— hopefully, sleep science will prevail over this dire legislative failure. 

What do you think?