NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Standard Time (ST) is just days away, and not everyone is loving the change from Daylight Saving Time (DST).
“I’m not excited about it,” Nashville resident Camille Lowe said.
Some of her friends from Florida, Olivia Szpunar and Shealyn Cunningham, agreed. “We’re all on the same page,” they said.
Cassidy Husted and Kayla Graves, visitors to Nashville from Columbus, Ohio, also concurred.
“I’m not looking forward to the darkness,” Husted said.
But some people don’t mind it.
“I actually like how it is,” Nashville resident Claire Sandström said. “I like having an hour of early sunlight.”
If there is a change to the current DST law, the issue is there’s no consensus on what to change it to.
“They don’t know, I believe, when you talk about Daylight Saving Time, I don’t know if they want to spring back or fall forward,” Rep. Johnny Garrett (R-Goodlettsville) said. “They don’t like doing both, but they want to keep one.”
Sen. Heidi Campbell (D-Nashville) sponsored a bill to eliminate the change and make it darker earlier year-round (putting us in Standard Time), if several neighboring states joined in.
“It would have eliminated Daylight Saving Time. Clearly, the health benefits of eliminating it juxtaposed to making it permanent are better,” she said. “That having been said, it was so controversial because a lot of people just wanted more daylight.”
On that basis, though she said she has yet to finalize her legislative package for next session, there seems to be little momentum for a change. “Right now, I don’t have any intention to bring it back,” Campbell said.
The concept of Daylight Saving Time is credited to Benjamin Franklin in the 1700s, but it wasn’t until World War I that the United States adopted the change to conserve energy. It was repealed the next year and left to local control.
During World War II, we kept a year-round DST to conserve energy once again, which then ran for three years. Again, it was left to local control.
Then in 1966, Congress established a uniform schedule for DST but still left it up to local control.
In 1974, the U.S. did enact year-round DST but quickly repealed it a year later.
“It became very unpopular very quickly. People didn’t like getting up in the dark, going to work in the dark,” DST expert Dr. David Prerau said. “They specifically didn’t like sending their kids to school, in the dark.”
A few logistical changes as to when DST would start and end took place in the decades following, which brings us to now.
In 2022, Congress unanimously passed a bill in the Senate to keep DST permanent. But then the House couldn’t agree on a change to DST or ST.
“We like to do outdoor activities. Beach, run, workout outside,” Szpunar said. “So, that kind of eliminates us being able to do those things.”
“Especially as girls, you can’t do much in the dark by yourself, especially,” Lowe agreed.
Many of the arguments revolve around either sleep or work.
“I don’t like it being dark, like I’d rather sleep more and just get off work and not have it be like Alaska and super dark,” Graves said.