What were they thinking? As little daylight as possible

Tanner Andrews

The US Senate recently passed the Federal Perpetual Darkness Act of 2022. Of course, it has to go through the House, and then be signed, to come into effect. And they have other distractions in Washington right now.

A few years ago, Florida enacted the corresponding Florida Perpetual Darkness Act of 2018 (Ch. 2018-99). The idea was that if a federal perpetual darkness law were passed, we could experience daylight saving time all year round.

The effect is quite simple. Every morning when we wake up it will be dark. This would be a year round problem.

There are cynics out there who applaud this. More kids trying to get to school in the dark ultimately means fewer kids leaving our lawns. I don’t think the teachers‘ unions would agree that this is a good thing.

In Florida, there are good things to come out of it. We could decree that West of the Apalachicola River would always be on daylight saving time, and the rest of us would stay on standard time. This would effectively put the entire state into one time zone.

Of course, that would be helpful, so it’s highly unlikely that our legislature would do such a thing. They are perpetually busy cooking up red meat for the next election, a somewhat pointless exercise since the entire state government is run by one party. It’s as if Putin is worried about undecided voters.

And maybe Perpetual Darkness is symbolically correct. Keeping the public in the dark helps when you run a one-party system: an ignorant populace is less likely to kick the rogues out. Who could question a new secret police force, to solve a problem that the governor recognizes does not exist?

Expense bills will also go much easier if Florida goes from a sunny state to a state of perpetual darkness. If no one sees the cost, Pave Florida 2019 (Ch. 2019-43) is going smoothly, picking the pockets of environmentalists and developers.

There are many benefits to suppressing the sun. And while a one-party state works best in the dark, I know what the legislature should be thinking – if this continues, someone is going to notice it’s dark over there.

– Andrews is a DeLand-area lawyer and longtime government critic. For the purposes of the column, he finds it convenient that there are so many governments to criticize.


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