PERRY: Hour holy grail — stop the clock on springing ahead and falling back


Last week, the speaker of the House officially handed video evidence of the failed Jan. 6 Capitol coup exclusively to the most sinister swindler at Fox News, Tucker Carlson. As promised, he turned it into an alarming pro-Trump propaganda film.

It doesn’t take much of a stretch after that to understand how the United States continues to inflict semi-annual daylight savings time change on its citizens despite their angry sentiment and even changing laws.

A Monmouth University poll last year revealed that only about a third of Americans don’t mind pushing their clocks ahead and back twice a year.

The U.S. Senate, which struggles regularly to count to 51, unanimously agreed last year to end the twice-annual hour swap in the middle of the night.

The Senate passed the Sunshine Protection Act. Then, the formerly Democratic controlled House groused about stuff nobody even remembers now and the change languished.

Closer to home, Colorado passed a law last year that would push the state into Daylight Savings Time forever, but it’s contingent on two other nearby states joining Colorado, Utah and Wyoming in making the leap to sensibility.


Determined, Florida GOP Sen. Marco Rubio this year has reintroduced the Senate Sunshine Protection Act. We live in a country, however, that, for political sport, flirts with economic meltdown by casually threatening debt limits.

And so, we begin again.

In the giant encyclopedia of incredibly stupid things humans have inflicted on themselves and the planet, which boasts such notable feats Congressperson Lauren Boebert and cappuccino-flavored potato chips, daylight saving time rises to the top of the list of heinous gaffes.

The story of time is marginally interesting. The story of saving it, not so much.

This gets a little nerdy here, but the gist is that ancient Egyptians had a thing for keeping track of time and the number “12.” 

Way-old timers identified 12 stars moving across the sky after sunset that marked the night. After several hundred years of refinement, voila, the 24-hour day was created.

It wasn’t fancy, but it helped people know when to meet to watch mastodon demolition derbies.

Within a few hundred years, we were all winding watches to let us know when to get to the bank to cover last night’s hot check before it got there.

Then came electric light, full-time jobs and The Great War. Germans invented the game of moving the clocks ahead in an effort to conserve energy needed to generate electricity.

Of course Americans had to do the same thing.

After the Great War, when the Germans went back to pouting and inventing other stuff, we all forgot about daylight saving time, because it was ridiculous, and we love us some electric light in this country.

Then the Germans started up again, this time inventing World War II, and we all needed more of everything and decided we could get it if we just moved the clocks ahead one hour in the spring.

A lot of things didn’t make much sense about World War II, and this was one of them. So the war ends and the Germans go back to making great trochen riesling and skis, but we don’t shake off the daylight saving time.

Rather than scrap this ridiculous notion of “saving daylight,” we institutionalize the damn thing.

We say it saves energy, which several studies show it clearly does not. We say that we keep at it to appease the farmers, which is a lie. Farmers are smart, rational people. They don’t care if you call it Work-Thirty. When the sun’s up, there’s farming to be done.

And so for the past 60 years, we’ve been dragging this useless boat anchor all over the calendar, saying that we’re all too vacuous or too OCD to go back to having the celestial dog wag the intervallic tail.

I would prefer that we just keep standard time year-round, because I’m old and fall asleep before the sun sets after one beer at the end of June, but I support anything that ends something as dumb as a bucket of hair inflicted on me just because state and federal lawmakers love hand-wringing.

Together we can beat the clock, if we can find the time.

Follow @EditorDavePerry on Mastadon, Twitter and Facebook or reach him at 303-750-7555 or [email protected]


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19 days ago

Have you ever been to Arizona in the summer when the sun rises at 4:30 AM? What the heck good is that for the vast majority of people? However having the sun up until 8:30 PM or so on summer evenings can let you enjoy a little league game or a fishing trip that much longer. You mention being old but are you old enough to remember when we eliminated Day light savings time back in the early 70’s, I think it was because of the energy crisis. I was in Junior high at the time and the sun didn’t come up until close to 9:00 AM so we were heading to school in total darkness, not only unpleasant but also unsafe. Is the switch always a minor pain in the rear? Sure it is but all you have to do is eliminate it to discover the value of what we’ve been doing for 60 years. Do a lot of people think it makes no sense? Probably so because they’ve never lived with the alternative.