OPINION: An end to springing forward and falling back

Photo of a Kansas sunset. (Maddy Daniels | Collegian Media Group)

Locusts are chirping, mourning doves are hooting and the smell of freshly cut grass fills the air. The warm sun is just beginning to set past 8:30 p.m., painting the sky in vibrant pinks and warm oranges. Bonfires and barbecues have been filled with friends and family for hours, and there is still time to go.

Summer is the primary season when the sun is out at its latest, so our recent shift into daylight saving time reminds me of warm and sunny memories. Summer is great because it allows us to maximize our time — to socialize at the end of a long day, kicking back on the patio well into the evening. In winter, this time gets cut short, forcing people to hibernate at home after returning from work or school.

On March 15, 2022, the Senate unanimously passed legislation that will make daylight saving time permanent by 2023 in the U.S. The House has yet to pick up the bill though, so it’s unsure if and when we’ll see any action take place. If so, we will fall back and spring forward once more, then be permanently locked in sunshine mode.

Personally, I am a big fan of passing this bill. My life is the opposite of thriving in late fall and winter. There are several reasons I have a bone to pick with the sun setting before 5 p.m.

Seasonal depression affects many during that time of year. Reduced amounts of sunlight and vitamin D can cause a drop in serotonin and disrupt our body’s internal clock. Dark and dreary evenings make many anti-social and lead to general moodiness. Sad girl playlist, here I come.

For me, it’s also hard to be productive when the sun isn’t out. There are still things to take care of in the evening, but I feel the only thing my brain can process is Netflix and some chai tea. With more sunlight later in the day, I’m productive much longer and still have time to relax before the day is up. Maximizing and using my time is easiest during daylight saving.

Driving in the dark is another issue I have with the shortened days. Visibility is low, and there are often more car accidents on people’s commute home from work. I’m never the one to volunteer to drive out of town in the winter, so hopefully, daylight saving time gets to stick around and increase safety on roads year-round. Plus, who wouldn’t want the vibes of cruising on a summer night all year long?

Of course, it won’t always be warm — we’ll still have the same passing of seasons. However, in the dead of winter, at least we’ll be reminded of those joyous summer nights.

Maddy Daniels is the assistant arts & culture editor for the Collegian and a junior in mass communications. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send comments to opinion@kstatecollegian.com.