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Crime and Dst

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Crime and DST

Crime has been around as long as humans have inhabited the earth, which has forced humanity to come up with a plethora of different types of crime prevention methods. One of the most basic deterrents of crime is something that Mother Nature provides: daylight. Every six months most of the world engages in the ritual of changing our clocks from Standard Time (STD) to Day Light Saving Time (DST). Unfortunately, when the shift goes from DST to STD, darkness is brought down on us an hour earlier. This darkness also brings along many crimes, since it gets darker earlier does not mean that the people will go home an hour earlier. By keeping the time in the Day Light saving mode, daylight will be extended longer and thus not exposing individuals to night time crimes any sooner than they have to be. By keeping in DST, we would be extending the daylight hours into the evening hours. In 2002, researchers from Britain gathered all available studies on effects of improved lighting on crime from both American and British studies. They relied on studies that included that included crime in both experimental and control areas. In this study, they found that 25% of the crimes like assault, larceny, and juvenile crimes occurred within the first six late afternoon-early evening hours where lighting was poor or non-existent as compared to areas that had better lighting (Calandrillo, 2008). On the other hand, out of Britain some studies have come about and are stating that lighting has no bearing on crimes. Most crimes occur when there are few, if any witnesses and help target potential targets, along with allowing the criminals to utilize the light to minimize the risk for them by allowing them to see what they are doing. A trial in the Essex suburbs over a two-year comparison, April 2006 to May 2007 with street lights left on and April of 2007 to May 2008 with street lights off at midnight showed an overall decrease in night-time crime in that area by 50% (Welter, 2015). Another study on crime and time of day, has nothing to do with lighting or daylight, crimes will happen and it’s based on the particular type of crime and the time of day they usually happens, with daylight, artificial light of darkness. The whole argument of this article is that the crimes depend on who is doing them whether younger of older, whether liquor is available and especially if guns are available. Guns make it easier for someone to accost another and quickly succeed, whether its daylight of not (Felson, 2003). Despite the fact that both these studies emphasized their findings on artificial lighting, many of the arguments still favor some lighting. When combine all the arguments that include energy saving along with keeping our streets lit to prevent crimes, extending our daylight as long as possible makes sense. Criminals seem to rise late and go to bed late (Calandrillo, 2008), so why not extend our daylight to allow individuals to conduct their business and avoid as much of the darkness as possible. The arguments that I encountered did not convince me in changing my position of keeping to DST, crime will happen and being in the wrong place at the wrong time cannot be helped. There is that chance that being in daylight will help deter a crime as compared to being in the dark.

References
Calandrillo, S. P. (2008). TIME WELL SPENT: AN ECONOMIC ANALYSIS OF DAYLIGHT SAVING TIME LEGISLATION. Wake Forest Law Review, 4345.
Felson, M., & Poulsen, E. (2003). Simple indicators of crime by time of day. Retrieved November 4, 2015, from http://www.forecastingprinciples.com/files/pdf/Felson_and_Poulsen,_Simple.pdf
Welter, K. (2015). Lighting & Crime. Retrieved November 4, 2015, from http://www.britastro.org/dark-skies/crime.htm

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