Around this time of year, it is not unusual to hear news stories about daylight savings time, but this time there is even a piece of legislation about it. In February, Assemblyman Kansen Chu, D-San Jose, introduced Assembly Bill 2496, which would reverse a law that voters approved back in 1949 via Proposition 12. At the time, a ballot statement in favor argued altered summertime hours would bolster “public health and industrial efficiency” by improving worker safety, limiting juvenile delinquency, saving water, preventing car crashes and aiding farmers. Instead, it turns out, we now have more workplace related accidents, disrupted travel schedules, cranky children, health issues, and it does not even save energy or help farmers. Others like the annual change and highlight the extended evening daylight for physical activity during the summer months.
This is simple and relevant way to introduce civics to our elementary school children. Sit with them and write a persuasive letter to our state representative, Assemblyman Brian Mainschein, through his chief of staff Lance Witmondt (firstname.lastname@example.org) explaining your opinion. Since Assemblyman Chu’s proposal would have to pass the State Legislature before being placed on the ballot to be approved by a vote of the people, there is time to have your voice heard. Some things to consider when writing the letter (see table above):
- Only Standard Time would put sunrise at just after 4am in the middle of summer
- Only DST would put sunrise at only around 8am in winter
Many states are considering this change right now (Washington, Oregon, Alaska) and there is event a petition to Congress with over 86,000 signatures already! Let’s get our voices heard too!