Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ridiculous Laws: Part One

Today I was chatting with my friend, Amber, and we got to talking about some of the rather ludicrous laws we have on our books. It's amazing to me that anyone would feel the need to outlaw things like whale hunting in Montana. I decided to take some time and look up some of these laws, and as I was reading, I deigned this topic worthy of a blog post. I shall list them by state, including my comments when I have something I simply must say.

1. It is illegal to sell peanuts in Lee County after sundown on Wednesday.
2. It is illegal to wear a fake mustache if it causes laughter in church.
Um...and that's necessary to legislate WHY?
3.You may not have an ice cream cone in your back pocket at any time.
Right. Because everyone wants to do it and it's SUCH a hazard...
4. In Anniston, Alabama, it is illegal to wear blue jeans down Noble Street.
Here's my question: is it okay to wear other colored jeans on Noble Street? And what if someone really needs to be on Noble Street, but all they have is blue jeans?

And my absolute FAVORITE for the state of Alabama...
5. Men who "deflower" virgins, regardless of age or marital status, may face up to 5 years in prison, in Mobile, Alabama.
So, um, were people really just not thinking here, or did the City Council REALLY want to make Mobile into a ghost town, because that's what following that law would cause. I could say more, but in the interest of keeping things PG, I won't.

1. It is illegal to view moose from airplanes.
2. It is illegal to wake a sleeping bear for the sake of taking a picture.
I mean, I realize that's not a good idea, but I can't help but wonder why the state legislators felt a need to outlaw it...
3. It is illegal to push a moose out of a moving airplane.
4. In Fairbanks, it is illegal to give alcohol to a moose.
And they outlawed it because everyone wants to make a moose drunk. I mean, I know I always have wanted to do exactly that...
5. In Haines, Alaska, a concealed carry license is necessary to carry a slingshot.
6. In Juneau, it is illegal for owners of pet flamingos to allow them into a barber shop.
Rats. I know how many people have pet flamingos in ALASKA!

1. It is illegal to hunt camels.
Because camels are not indigenous to Arizona, one can only hope that law is somehow tied to the American Camel Corps days of the 19th century...
2. Wearing a red mask while committing a misdemeanor will make it an automatic felony.
3. It is illegal for a donkey to sleep in a bathtub.
4. It is illegal to manufacture imitation cocaine.
Because we don't want to rip off all the people who are breaking the law by buying and using an illegal drug to begin with...
5. It is illegal to defend one's self against an attacker using any weapon other than what the attacker is using.
Because we want everything to be fair for a criminal attacker...
6. In Globe, Arizona, it is illegal to play cards in the street with a Native American.
7. In Marcopia County, no more than six girls may live in any one house.
Is there an age range for this, or by "girls" do they really mean "females?" And what about families who have more than 6 daughters? My dad had 9 sisters. Lucky for them they didn't live in Marcopia County, Arizona!
8. In Tombstone, it is illegal for anyone over the age of 18 to have more than one tooth visibly missing when smiling.
I hope the city is prepared to pay the dental expenses incurred upon people by this law...
9. In Mesa, it is illegal to smoke within 15 feet of any building, unless the smoker possesses a class two liquor license.
And how does owning a *liquor* license make this okay?

1. It is illegal for the Arkansas River to rise any higher than the Main Street bridge in Little Rock.
First off, it if it gets that high, there's already quite a problem going on, and second, how do these people plan on prosecuting the Arkansas River if this law is broken?
2. If a school teacher bobs her hair, she won't get a raise.
3. A man can legally beat his wife, but no more than once a month.
And they think a man base enough to beat his wife is going to pay attention to that law?
4. In Fayetteville, it is illegal to kill any living creature.
I'm sorry, I don't care if killing wasps is illegal. They come into my space, and they're going to be killed. This also poses a problem for those who use antibiotics...
5. In Little Rock, it is illegal for dogs to bark after 6 pm.
6. In Little Rock, it is illegal to walk one's cow down Main Street after 1 pm on Sundays.
7. In Little Rock, any flirtation which occurs on the streets between a man and a woman may result in 30 days in jail.

1. It is illegal for any vehicle without a driver to exceed 60 mph.
Right. Because unmanned moving vehicles are going to pay attention to this and are perfectly safe below 60 mph.
2. In Baldwin Park, California, it is illegal to ride a bike in a swimming pool.
3. In Blythe, no one owning fewer than two cows may wear cowboy boots.
4. In Carmel, men may not step outside wearing jackets and pants which do not match.
Not such a horrid idea, but who is to determine what matches?
5. In Chico, detonating a nuclear device within the city limits will result in a $500 fine.
And they think after the detonation of said device, anyone is going to be around to collect the fine?
6. In Eureka, it is illegal for a man with a mustache to kiss a woman.
7. In Fresno, it is illegal to hold a poker tournament at an elementary school.
8. In Hollywood, it is illegal to drive more than 2,000 sheep down Hollywood Boulevard at a time.
But 1,999 is totally kosher...
9. In Indian Wells, it is illegal to drink intoxicating cement.
I don't even know how to respond to this one...
10. In L.A., it is illegal for a man to beat his wife with a strap wider than 2 inches without her consent.
Were the lawmakers completely stoned when they came up with this one?

There are more, but I have a 10 law per state rule, so moving on...

1. It is illegal to mutilate rocks in state parks.
2. In Alamosa, it is illegal to throw missiles at cars.
But pedestrians and bikers, as well as houses, are perfectly okay.
3. In Denver, it is illegal to loan your vacuum cleaner to your next-door neighbor.
Yes, because that's SUCH a public nuisance...
4. In Denver, driving black cars on Sunday is illegal.
5. In Vail, it is illegal to crash into obstacles on ski slopes.
Because everyone who does that planned to do it...

1. It is illegal to call a pickle a pickle unless it bounces.
2. In Devon, it is illegal to walk backwards after sunset.
3. In Hartford, educating dogs is illegal.
4. In Hartford, a man may not kiss his wife on Sundays.
But kissing anyone else is okay?

1. In Rehoboth Beach, it is illegal to whisper in church.
2. In Rehoboth Beach, it is illegal to pretend to sleep on a bench on the boardwalk.
So just make sure you're actually sleeping...

1. It is illegal for married women to parachute on Sundays.
2. It is illegal for men to be seen in public in any kind of strapless gown.
But put straps on, and it's all peachy.
3. Showering naked is illegal.
I'm trying to figure this one out...
4. It is illegal to fart in public after 6 pm.

NOTE: There were several awesomely stupid laws in Florida that I couldn't post because of their inappropriate nature. None of the other states so far have anything like the ones of Florida that I can't post!

1. Donkeys may not be kept in bathtubs.
2. It is illegal to carry an ice cream cone in one's back pocket.
What is it about donkeys in bathtubs and ice cream cones in back pockets which makes multiple states outlaw them?
3. In Atlanta, tying a giraffe to a telephone pole or lamp post is illegal.
4. In Columbus, it is illegal to cuss on the phone.
5. Exclaiming, "Oh boy" in Jonesboro is illegal.

1. A resident not owning a boat may be fined.
2. It is illegal to place coins in one's ears.

1. It is illegal to fish from a camel's back.
I have to wonder, was this ever even a problem?
2. In Boise, it is illegal to fish from the back of a giraffe.
3. In Pocatello, it is illegal for a person to be seen in public without a smile on his or her face.

1. Anyone not carrying at least one dollar on his or her person may be arrested for vagrancy.
2. A person driving a car must alert the police before entering any city's limits in said car.
3. In Chicago, just as in Idaho, it is illegal to fish from a giraffe's back.
4. In the Pullman area of Chicago, it is illegal to drink beer from a bucket while sitting on the curb.
I really want to know the reason for that one!
5. In Kirkland, it is illegal for bees to fly over the city, or through any of its streets.
And the penalty for that is...?

1. In Indiana, the value of Pi, according to state law is 3.
Except it's really not...
2. It is perfectly legal to avoid paying medical expenses for a minor by praying for said minor.
3. It is illegal to catch a fish with one's bare hands.
4. In Elkhart, it is illegal for any barber to cut off a child's ear.
But cutting off the ear of an adult is acceptable?
5. In Evansville, it is illegal to drive with one's lights on while driving down Main Street.
Good to know, since I'm in Evansville several times a year...

1. One-armed pianists must perform for free.
Um, I've played some one-handed piano pieces, and lemme tell you, some of those things are way harder and way more impressive than the two-handed pieces...
2. Kisses may last for no longer than 5 minutes.
3. All boxes used to pick hops must be exactly 36 inches long.
Any regulations on the width and depth of these boxes?
4. In Marshalltown, it is illegal for horses to eat fire hydrants.
Actually, I'd be more inclined to offer a reward to anyone who owned a horse who *could* eat a fire hydrant...

1. It is illegal to shoot rabbits from motorboats.
2. If two trains meet on the same track, neither is allowed to proceed until the other has passed.
Um, I don't know a lot about railroads, but I'm pretty sure that means those trains will be stuck there...forever...
3. In Lawrence, it is illegal for anyone to wear a bee in his or her hat.
4. In Topeka, it is illegal to sing the alphabet song on the streets in public.

1. It is illegal to fish with a bow and arrow.
2. Women in Owensboro must obtain their husbands' permission before buying hats.

1. Stealing an alligator could result in 10 years in prison.
2. Severe burns on humans must be reported to the fire marshal.
3. In New Orleans, it is illegal to chase fish through public parks.
4. In New Orleans, practicing voodoo within the city limits is illegal.
Well, um, obviously THAT one isn't enforced well...

1. It is mandated by law that shotguns be taken with a person to church, in case of an attack by Native Americans.
Racism, anyone?
2. It is illegal to step out of a plane in flight.
I'm really having trouble believing that this was ever really a problem...
3. In Wells, it is illegal to advertise in cemeteries.
Apparently, there are actually over-achieving business men out there...

1. It is illegal to grow thistles in one's yard.
2. In Baltimore, it is illegal to take a lion to the movies.

1. It is illegal to eat more than three sandwiches at a wake.
2. It is illegal to go to bed without having had a full bath beforehand.
3. Gorillas are prohibited in the back seats of cars.
4. In Boston, it is illegal to play the fiddle.
5. In Boston, it is permissible for two people to duel to the death on Sundays on the Common, provided the Governor is in attendance.
6. In Marlborough, it is illegal to buy, sell, or otherwise possess a squirt gun.

1. It is illegal for a woman to cut her hair without her husband's permission.
2. In Detroit, it is illegal for a man to scowl at his wife on Sunday.
3. In Harper Woods, it is illegal to paint sparrows and sell them as parakeets.
4. In Wayland, anyone can keep his or her cow on the streets of downtown for 3 cents per day.

To be continued...