Spring Forward Controversy

The Many Stages of Springing Forward

On Monday, Your Alarm Goes Off, and It Feels Like the Middle of the Night

Source: Columbia Pictures

These days, you barely have to remember to set your clocks forward for daylight saving — your smartphone and laptop will do it for you. But that doesn't mean it's so seamless for our sanity. The national tradition of messing with our external and internal clocks dates back to Benjamin Franklin. The founding father thought waking up early was virtuous, and he's credited with coining the phrase "Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise."

But the practice of forcing people to "Spring forward" did not come until 1918, during World War I, as a way to save energy. It was soon abolished after but came back as "war time" in 1942. After the Second World War, it was up to each locality to decide, until the Uniform Time Act of 1966, which set up time zones. Since then, most states have followed the annual and sometime tortuous ritual that actually has mostly economic benefits: it gives people more time to shop and consume after work. That's all well and good, but losing an hour of sleep is not our favorite thing in the world. Relive the ups and downs you're enduring right now.

Front Page Image Source: NBC