In a desperate move to stem the tide of people leaving the state of North Dakota, Governor John Hoeven and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem today announced that they will propose legislation to change the name of North Dakota to Yoga. Governor Hoeven explained, "This bleeding of our population has got to stop. We feel that this is a bold move to not only stop the fleeing of our citizens to warmer climates but, in fact, will increase the population of the state four fold".
A few years ago, it was suggested by some North Dakota state legislators that the state should change its name to merely "Dakota" in an attempt to curb outmigration and encourage business investment. Their rationale was that, by including the "North" in North Dakota, it paints a picture of isolation and bitter cold. Nothing came of this proposal.
When asked by reporters if the Governor thought the idea of renaming the state's name to Yoga a "bit harebrained", he quipped, "Look there is nothing harebrained about this. We tried everything in the past to get people to stay here. Hell, we offered free land and even open invitations to any and all illegal aliens. And not one person took us up, let alone an illegal alien settling here. With 27.8 billion yogis in the world, it would not take many to quadruple the state's population"!
When North Dakota's lone Yogi was asked about the proposal, she replied, "Wouldn't it confuse people when they heard that you were going to Yoga? I mean, how would they know you are going to the state of Yoga and not a Yoga class"? We presented this question to the Governor whose reply was, "Damn, nobody knows where the hell North Dakota is anyway. So why should this be any more confusing to them".
Current North Dakota map and proposed map
Current North Dakota flag and proposed flag
Current North Dakota state bird (Western Meadowlark - Sturnella neglecta) and proposed state bird (Crane - Bakasana)