Laws are an important part of any civilization: they are there to protect citizens and to ensure the well being of society… at least, in theory. The human race has seen some pretty awful laws: racist laws, sexist laws and just plain stupid laws. But hey, the human race is not a little kid anymore, right?
Humans have come a long way and have grown a lot; surely that growth would be represented in the American legal system? Think again. Despite humanity having entered the 21st century, America still has laws which are so dumb, you may feel like your head will explode. Read on to find out what societal rules received the honor of being America’s most ridiculous laws.
10 Using X-Rays to Determine Your Shoe Size is a Punishable Offense
Most people are aware of the harmful side effects of radiation; after all, dentists don’t put a lead apron over you so that you can look more fashionable. Nevertheless, some people still prioritize being amused over their health. This has became such a problem that Nevada had to enforce a law prohibiting people from using a shoe-fitting fluoroscope (also known as pedoscope and sometimes foot-o-scope), a device which determines your shoe size by scanning it with x-rays. Apparently, just because you don’t care about your health doesn’t mean that the state doesn’t.
9 No Simultaneous Drink Offering
Think what you do at a bar is your business? Think again; in Nevada, it’s the state’s business: it is illegal for a person to buy drinks for more than three people at once - man, woman, trans, Nevada doesn’t care; it won’t tolerate any of your shenanigans. You might want to keep a close tab on your generosity, too. What if you suddenly forget yourself and say “all drinks are on me!”? You may end up paying for more than just the drinks.
8 You Can Be Merry, but Only for a Limited Time...
Ever get frustrated at your neighbours when they leave their Christmas lights out way past Christmas? Well, the state of Maine gets more than just frustrated. Believe it or not, it is illegal in Maine to keep up Christmas Decorations after January 14th. Do you still have Christmas lights up on January 13th? No problem, that is totally fine. But January 15th? No way buddy, now you’ve just gone too far.
7 Pickles Must Bounce
In Connecticut, the government cares about the important things, like making sure that the pickle in your hamburger is a real pickle, the kind that bounces, not one of those other non-bouncing pickle wannabes. For a pickle to legally be called a pickle, it must bounce. According to NBC, the pickle law has actually created some difficulties for local farmers within the past few years. It’s not as easy as it sounds to find the right method to ensure your pickles’ bounciness.
6 If You Love Your Wife, Don’t Make Her Fat
The state of Idaho does not care if it is St-Valentine’s day, your wife’s birthday or your anniversary, you must be very cautious as to how much candy you give your spouse. It is illegal for a man to give his significant other a box of candy weighing more than 50lbs - now that’s a lot of candy. Way to go Idaho, keep fighting obesity and diabetes, one candy box at a time.
5 Seaweed Stealing is a Crime
Do you love seaweed? Well, so do fertilizer and animal feed companies. Therefore, in 1973, New Hampshire officially made it illegal to collect and take away seaweed at night. Though the resulting sentence is unspecified, carrying away seaweed at night is a violation of fish and game provisions. Why would anyone want to steal seaweed? Seaweed is used for a variety of purposes: filler in fertilizer, animal feed, as well as containing alginate, a substance which thickens solutions. We urge you not to think about it next time you’re eating Jello…
4 No Wearing Body Vests While Murdering
Planning on committing a crime? While we strongly suggest you don't, be doubly aware if you plan on wearing some protection. In New Jersey, you must carefully choose your attire before committing a crime, as it could add to your sentence if caught. If you choose to wear a body vest or bullet-proof armor while committing, for instance, murder, robbery or sexual assault, you will be committing and charged for the crime of wearing a bullet-proof vest while committing the felony. In the case that this law is not respected, the original crime committed will be pushed from a third-degree to a second or first-degree.
3 Seduction is Illegal
South Carolina is very particular about how you seduce women. It is illegal for a man over 16 to seduce a woman by pretending to want to marry her. Doing so will result in the male being charged with misdemeanor and being charged at the court’s discretion. He may also be jailed but for no longer than a year. Fear not if you are a con-man, however, as the law is quite vague and is not applicable if the woman is already married or “lewd” or “unchaste” (neither words are defined by the law). The woman must also have an alibi to prove the man’s false intentions or he cannot be convicted.
2 No Bingo Addictions
In the state of North Carolina, bingo games are under close supervision of the law: each bingo game can only go on for as along as 5 hours. Moreover, only one bingo game can take place within a 48-hour period and give away no more than $500 worth of prizes. Moral of the story: if you really love your grandma, and she really loves bingo, keep her out of North Carolina (unless she has a serious bingo problem).
1 Sex is a not only a Sin, it’s a Crime
In the state of Virginia, sex before marriage is not only considered a sin, it’s a crime and a punishable offense. Regardless of your age, religious views and whatever else, making love before tying the knot is a Class 4 misdemeanor. Keep those pants on until you found the one, ladies and gents!