Hawaii was the last state to be admitted into the union back in 1959, bringing the number of states in the continental US from an awkward 49 to a nice, solid 50.
And so we have 50 stars in the American flag today- arranged uniformly and magnificently beside 13 white and red bars.
But what if the US added a new state tomorrow? 51 states? Where would it go? What would its name be? Would someone make a new flag to accommodate the extra star?
A 51st state. The idea seems just as preposterous to me as scientists deleting Pluto from our solar system. And yet, the last planet printed in any 2013 grade school science textbook diagram is Neptune. Imagine that.
So a new state isn’t so inconceivable after all. In fact, there’s talk of it, and it would be named North Colorado.
Residents of a recently growing number of rural northeastern counties in Colorado (predominantly Republican) want to secede from their home state.
The initiative began after a series of gun and environmental laws were passed by the state legislature in which these rural counties generally opposed. The counties feel sidelined when it comes to decision-making in Democratically-controlled Denver, the state capital.
The counties additionally feel that their regions have been negatively impacted by some of these decisions.
Certain counties feel as if their voices aren’t heard, and much of the problem stems from geographical isolation.
Alright, so poor planning back in earlier decades when land surveyors decided that it would just be easier to make most western states basic in shape, comprised primarily of right angles- mostly rectangles, or some type of rectangle derivative.
Take Moffat County, CO. The county is literally on the opposite side of the state in the western corner, separated from the rest of the aggravated counties by the Rocky Mountains. No wonder Denver isn’t listening: there’s a pretty large barrier in the way there.
If Moffat County disaffiliated itself, North Colorado would not be contiguous like the other mainland states. They’d have to include a bunch of other top Colorado counties in order to achieve contiguity.
Case in point: one idea is asking Wyoming to expand their borders south and annex the dissatisfied counties. But this still wouldn’t accommodate Moffat. Besides, Wyoming seems cautious and uninterested. According to many news sources, the Equality State feels as if they have other issues to focus on, as does the nation as a whole.
Wyoming is right. If North Colorado becomes a state, that means they would receive congressional representation. Washington D.C. can barely get anything done as it is.
The secession idea is intensely politically charged, but according to NationalJournal.com, Weld County’s commissioner has an idea that could get Congress on board:
North Colorado would obviously be a red state, but if we admitted Puerto Rico or Washington D.C as well, this would likely be a boost for the Democrats.
See how quickly one more state became two?
When it comes down to it, a North Colorado isn’t likely. It just isn’t realistic for many reasons. Besides, even if county residents approved the ballot initiative, they need both the Denver legislature’s and Congress’s votes.
All in all, it’s a symbolic initiative, and it represents accurately many of the foundations in which this country was built upon. These counties must know that secession isn’t likely, but they certainly were successful in getting Denver’s attention, even with mountains and miles of grass in the way.