To the Editor:
In his letter to the editor, Mr. McMackin stated, “It (the time zone issue) also seems it comes from someone ‘new’ to the valley, who doesn’t appear to understand, not having lived here very long, the real issues of the community related to being basically halfway between larger centers in different time zones.”
As a relatively new resident of the Creston Valley (33 years), I fall into the aforementioned category; and yet I’ve heard most of the reasons why people oppose switching to daylight time in the spring — everything from keeping our valley unique, not being able to squeeze an extra hour of light from the sun and confused cows that won’t know when to stand and deliver. And there are those who would rather not admit to being bothered by having to change the clocks on their DVD players, VCRs and eight-track players.
This simple concept of daylight time garners a lot of attention and passion, even anger, so it’s time to put the issue to rest once and for all. Let’s vote. I suggest we hold public debates and forums, and then put it to a referendum by adding it to the ballot for the next civic election. Then we could say that we not only believe in democracy, but we practice it too!
I wonder how many people who are so opposed to daylight time have never even experienced it. I’d bet half of those who now oppose the change would love it by the end of the second year of its implementation, and wonder why it took us so long to adopt it. What is so horrible about having an extra hour of light at the end of a lovely spring, summer or early fall evening?
Picture this: We’ve been through a long, grey winter with short days, rain, snow and cold. It’s springtime now, and the days are finally getting longer. People are out walking, riding bikes and enjoying the outdoors. Adults are tossing the ball with their kids or for their dogs in the park, teens are skateboarding and people are doing yardwork. It’s awesome to be outside again with family, friends and pets. But then darkness shoos us in. What if we had an extra hour of daylight at the end of the day? What if we traded that unnecessary hour of light in the crazy early part of the morning for an extra hour of daylight in the evening?
Imagine that we’re heading toward the summer solstice, and it’s getting dark around 8:30 p.m. To make a point, suppose there are those who love the morning light so much that they want to change the time in the other direction, so that it gets light an hour earlier, thereby having darkness arrive at 7:30 p.m. instead of 8:30. If you’re thinking, “Oh my, that would be too early for it to get light, and too early for it to get dark in the summer,” then you now understand what we daylight time proponents are talking about. We think 8:30 is too early for it to get dark, and we’d prefer 9:30.
An overwhelming majority of North America switches over to daylight time, a clear indication of its popularity. If the advantages of it didn’t outweigh a minor inconvenience or two, the public wouldn’t accept it. It’s that simple.
I have an idea: Let’s just vote on it.