Groundhog Day is goofy

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Associated Press

Groundhog Club handler A.J. Dereume holds Punxsutawney Phil, the weather prognosticating groundhog, during Tuesday’s 135th celebration of Groundhog Day. Phil’s handlers said the groundhog has forecast six more weeks of winter weather.

Jack Baudoin, Columnist

Everyday people across the country trust in their local weather reporters to tell them the forecast for the coming days, and a giant rodent is definitely the last choice for this place of authority.

Each year on Feb. 2, people all over the country do this — trusting whether this animal sees its shadow or not to determine if there will be six more weeks of winter. While one can appreciate it as simply a fun tradition, it is a rather ridiculous one.

Punxsutawney Phil, the famous groundhog in question, is only right about 39% of the time, according to LiveScience. There are many jokes about meteorologists getting the weather wrong, but they are generally right more often than that. There is a very simple reason as to why Phil is wrong so often: clouds.

Courtesy GIPHY

Has anyone ever thought of the clouds? People bet on whether there will be six more weeks of winter solely based upon the cloud coverage of that day. It is almost as if people forget that clouds form year round, regardless of the season, and they are constantly changing, never staying in the same place for long.

Trusting in an animal to see its shadow with varying degrees of cloud cover is not very trustworthy. Maybe the groundhog just did not see his shadow even if it was there. This is a groundhog after all.

Groundhog Day is a very cute tradition. It’s part of American culture to get excited over this animal seeing its shadow or not. Why it has become such a popular part of our culture is very questionable because the whole situation is rather goofy.