Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Colorado day

August 1 marks the entry of Colorado into the Union in 1876, the Centennial State. It's a state holiday, which my family used to enjoy with picnics and family gatherings. [It helped that my grandmother and a cousin had August 2 birthdays.] I'm proud of my Colorado heritage. It was and is a great state. Katherine Lee Bates wrote "America the Beautiful" just after a trip up Pike's Peak. Those majestic mountains were crystal clear when I was growing up, before the brown cloud of pollution shrouded them. Progress has been made on cutting pollution and other environmental causes.

Colorado has competitive politics, which makes for less corruption and more accountability. It's one of the healthiest states, with low obesity and high exercise rates. The weather is ideal: 300 days of sunshine, cool nights, and warm but not humid summer days. If it bordered an ocean, it would be heaven -- or crowded like California.

For what it's worth, Colorado also has one of the better-designed state flags -- clean and clear, unlike the cluttered designs of West Virginia or Pennsylvania, for example. A schoolkid can draw the design.

I don't remember what the state song was, but several years ago the State Legislature adopted "Rocky Mountain High" as an alternative, despite its mention of "getting high" around a campfire.

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