On Monday, we received a news release from the Kansas Committee for Reclaiming What is Rightfully Ours (RETAKE), an ad hoc group with the stated goal of restoring that part of Colorado once claimed by Kansas.Hell, we've got a National Guard, why not just take Denver? Those pansies would never know what hit them. After our successful conquest of the lands rightly belonging to us, Kansas would be the 5th largest state by area, and Colorado would have the smallest population, smaller even than Rhode Island.
The whimsical release arrived on Colorado Day, in time for our 129th anniversary of statehood, which was granted Aug. 1, 1876. It was four months late for an April Fools' Day joke.
A little history: Kansas became a state on Jan. 29, 1861, at which time the federal government took the western third of the former Kansas Territory to add to the new Colorado Territory.
"Our researchers have strong reason to believe that the handover in 1861 was an illegal act that will not stand up under close court scrutiny," said RETAKE chairwoman Deb Goodrich, who also is publisher of the committee's sponsor, the Kansas Journal of Military History.
We suspect her of perpetrating a Colorado Day spoof. Let's play along.
Kansas did sue Colorado over Arkansas River flows at the state line in 1985. Kansas sought $322 million at first but ended up getting less than $35 million. Undaunted, RETAKE wants more - all the cities and towns fed by the Arkansas River, as well as Denver and the rest of the prosperous northern Front Range outside our basin.
The target date for retaking Colorado is Jan. 29, 2011, the 150th anniversary of Kansas statehood.
"There will also be some name changes," Goodrich quipped. "Colorado Springs, Colorado, after 2011 will be known as Kansas Springs, Kansas."
The authors of the press release publish the Kansas Journal of Military History, and are deserving of some free publicity. Pick up a copy and learn about Custer's FIrst Stand.