"It is not wisdom but authority that makes a law."
Never have the late and great British philosopher Thomas Hobbes' words rung more true than when examining some of the rules that have become ingrained in the makeup of the United States. Think you know what crazy laws have been on the books in your state? Click through to find out if you're right!
Boozehounds, Beware: You’re Not Welcome in This State’s Bars
In Alaska, it is illegal to be drunk in a bar. State laws say anyone already drunk may not “knowingly” enter a bar to drink more, or remain in the watering hole where they became inebriated.
Plainclothes officers positioned in bars to spot such revelers will call in uniformed officers to make an arrest. Once a person is arrested, the suspect is cited and then released in an effort to modify both bars and the bargoers’ behavior.
Don’t Even Think About Snacking on a Working Frog in This State
In California, frogs that die or are killed during frog-jumping contests “must be destroyed as soon as possible,” according to state legislature. They may not be eaten or “otherwise used for any purpose,” the law states.
Only the Best for the Pigs in This State
They say a pig will eat anything, but if you plan to treat any Arizona-based swine like living a garbage disposal, think again. Arizonians are not allowed to feed garbage to pigs without first obtaining a permit.
Exceptions do exist if the pigs are being raised for the garbage-giver’s own use.
Scary Clowns Are Not Welcome in This State
In Connecticut, it is illegal to dress like a clown with the intent to cause alarm. State police announced on Facebook in 2016 that “individuals dressing as clowns and engaging in threatening or alarming behavior will be immediately addressed by law enforcement.”
The warning came as numerous sightings of clowns appearing, seemingly out of nowhere, were reported across the country.
Celebrate, but Keep It Tidy
Until this year, the use of confetti of any kind was outlawed in the city of Mobile in Alabama. One section of the city code banned its residents from having, using, selling, making or handling confetti, while another section of code forbade its use at Mardi Gras parades. The city council in August passed two ordinances allowing its residents to enjoy confetti of the paper variety.
Keep Quiet When Getting a Sandwich Here
In the mood for a late-night sub? If you’re in Arkansas, you better not lay on the horn while getting one. A law on the books in Little Rock states that “no person shall sound the horn on a vehicle at any place where cold drinks or sandwiches are served after 9 p.m.”
Why’d the Chicken Cross the Road? Well, It Didn’t. At Least Not in This State
Chickens in Quitman, Georgia, are not allowed to cross an open road. “It shall be unlawful for any person owning or controlling chickens, ducks, geese or any other domestic fowl to allow the same to run at large upon the streets,” the law states.
Ho-Ho-No: Santa Can’t Be Used to Sell Alcohol in This Spot
In Washington, D.C., the image of Santa Claus cannot be used to promote the “sale, service or consumption of alcoholic beverages,” according to legislation. Using his image to sell booze in D.C. is strictly forbidden as well.
You’ll Never Spot a Billboard in This State
Hawaii has banned outdoor ads across the entire state. In 1927, the Outdoor Circle Club lobbied for a law preventing such billboards from being erected in the name of “urban beautification.”
No Tossing Little People at Bars in This State
Florida bar and restaurant owners — and owners of any other place where liquor is sold — may be fined up to $1,000 if they are found to allow the activity of little person tossing at their place of business. The practice was legal until 1989.
This State Takes Its Outdoor Furniture Designations Very Seriously
Considering putting a comfy couch on your porch to better enjoy the great outdoors? Better not if you live in Colorado. In Boulder, residents are not allowed to “place, use, keep, store or maintain any upholstered furniture not manufactured for outdoor use” on their porches or in their yards, the legislature states.
This includes, but is not limited to, upholstered chairs, upholstered couches and mattresses. The law was the result of several incidents involving allegedly drunk college students burning such furniture after stealing it from such places.
Sorry, You Can’t Eat Your Neighbors Here
Cannibalism in Idaho is strictly prohibited and is punishable by up to 14 years in prison. However, it is permitted under “life-threatening conditions as the only apparent means of survival.”
Mustachioed Players, Beware! Your Lothario Ways Could Get You in Trouble Here
In Indiana, mustaches are illegal if the bearer of said facial hair has a tendency to habitually kiss other humans.
No Profiting Off Fido’s Fur, Laws in This State Say
Anyone in Delaware caught making products using the hair of a domestic cat or dog will face a fine of up to $2,500. They will also be forbidden from owning such a critter for up to 15 years after the conviction.
A Sobering Fact
In more than 25 counties in Kansas, it is illegal to sell liquor by the glass. Individual counties wanting to prohibit the sale of alcohol in public places can do so by resolution or petition.
Butter Bootleggers Are Not Welcome Here
Iowans take their butter very seriously. Anyone trying to pass off margarine as butter is liable to be charged with a misdemeanor, according to food-labeling laws in Iowa. “Renovated butter,” that is, butter that's gone bad or is impure, but is cleaned up for human consumption, must be labeled as such, as well.
Another Garbage Pig Law
This time, in Louisiana! Garbage must be cooked “on the premises just prior” to it being fed to hogs, according to the state legislature.
Check Your Dreams of Owning an Expensive Fish at the Door If You Live Here
It’s illegal in Illinois to possess any variety of aquatic life whose value exceeds $600. It’s also illegal to possess any variety of aquatic life that was captured or killed in violating of the Fish and Aquatic Life Code, according to state law
Doing Anything but Walking on the Sidewalk Here Could Cost You
In Maine, no person may roller skate on the sidewalk. Those looking to buck the laws could be hit with a whopping $10 fine.
Catching a Film? Leave Your Lions At Home if You Live Here
It is illegal to take a lion to a movie theater in Baltimore, Maryland. There go our weekend plans.
Use Your Words or Else You Can’t Serve
Planning to run for public office in Kentucky? Then you had better not have ever participated in a duel. Every legislator, public officer, and attorney in the state must swear under oath to have never taken part in such a fight.
One More Law About Pigs
Contests centered on capturing a pig that is "greased, oiled, or otherwise," are banned in Minnesota.
Be Mindful of Your Ps and Qs While Here
Use your words while in Mississippi, or else you might find yourself behind bars. Those caught using profanity in public could wind up in jails for up to 30 days. Using profane language in the presence of two or more people is also illegal.
Don't Touch the Bears in This State
Anyone thinking about getting into fisticuffs with a bear in Missouri should reconsider. Bear wrestling is banned in the state, with a law passed in 1998 due to reports animal cruelty violations. Taking part in any component of bear wrestling, whether a person is training the bear, collecting admission fees from spectators or advertising the event itself, could be charged with a misdemeanor.
Want to Tell Someone's Fortune? Better Be Certified if You're Doing it Here
In Massachusetts, it's illegal to tell fortunes for money without being certified to do so. A fortune teller must also have lived in the state for at least one year prior to applying. Those caught skirting the rules can face up to a $100 fine, but they should be able to see that coming.
This State Has a Specific Requirement for Those Wanting to Get Hitched
Anyone in Nebraska who plans to tie the knot can only do so if they are free of any sexually transmitted disease. "No person who is afflicted with a venereal disease shall marry in this state," the law states.
Keep Your Animals off the Train Tracks Here
In Montana, it is illegal to drive an animal onto railroad tracks with the intent to injure the "corporation or persons owning the railroad." Those caught doing so could face a fine of up to $50,000, up to five years in prison, or both, as well as the responsibility to cover the costs of all damage incurred.
Leave the Seaweed in this State Alone
In New Hampshire, it is illegal to take seaweed or rockweed from a beach at night. Anyone caught doing so "shall be guilty of a violation," according to the law, which was passed 1973.
Wearing a Bulletproof Vest While Committing a Crime Can Add to Your Sentence in This State
In New Jersey, anyone caught wearing a bulletproof vest while committing a "grave criminal act" can be charged separately for donning the armor.
Cheaters Won't Prosper in This State
In Michigan, adulterers could be hit with felony charges for stepping out on their significant other. Adultery is punishable by a maximum sentence of four years in prison and possibly a $5,000 fine.
Keep Your Saliva to Yourself Here
In New Mexico, spitting on the steps of an opera house is forbidden. In fact, most public places are a no-spit zone, including, but not limited to: "any of the public sidewalks, crosswalks, passes, byways or paths in the city, or upon the floor or steps of the public building, store, hotel, church, opera house, office room, schoolhouse or any other building in the city in which persons are in the habit of frequenting, assembling or congregating," the law states.
No Masks in Public Allowed Here
In New York, disguises that mask a person's face in public are forbidden. The law has been in place since 1845.
Keep Your Bingo Games Speedy if You're in This State
Hankering for a good old fashioned game of bingo while in North Carolina, but afraid it could go on for ages? Fear not: state law restricts any bingo game being conducted or sponsored by a commercial organization to not last more than five hours.
That Fedora's Coming off if You Want to Tango Here
In Fargo, North Dakota, it is illegal to dance with a hat on or to even wear a hat to a function where dancing is taking place.
Know Before You Go
In Ohio, every underground coal mine operator is required by law to provide "adequate supply" of toilet paper with each toilet on the premises. "At least one sanitary flush toilet shall be provided where ten or fewer miners use such facilities," the law states.
Don't Trip Up That Horse
In Oklahoma, it is against the law to promote, engage in or be employed at a horse tripping event. But it should be noted that the term "horse tripping" does not include the lawful laying down of a horse for medical purposes or for the purposes of identification, the law states.
Even if You Can't Hold it, You Better Not Throw It in This State
It is a Class A misdemeanor to leave a container of urine or fecal matter on the side of any road in Oregon.
Planning to Barter Your Baby? You're Out of Luck if You Live in This State
In Pennsylvania, "a person is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree if he deals in humanity, by trading, bartering, buying, selling, or dealing in infant children," according to state law.
No Highways for Horses in This State
In Rhode Island, racing or testing the speed of a horse over a public highway is illegal. Caught doing it? You'll face a fine of up to $20 or no more than 10 days in jail.
Honesty Is the Only Policy When Courting in This State
In South Carolina, it is illegal for any male over the age of 16 to seduce a woman by falsely promising to marry her. Ladies, however, have no such law on the books stopping them from doing much the same.
Protecting Your Crops With a Bang
In South Dakota, farmers wanting to protect their sunflower crops from crows and other birds are permitted to set off fireworks and other explosives to do so.
No Sitting on the Sidewalks Here
Tired of walking? Think twice before sitting down on a sidewalk in Nevada's Downtown Reno Regional Center.
"Except as otherwise provided in this section, no person shall sit or lie down upon a public sidewalk, or upon a blanket, chair, stool, or any other object," the law states. Any person in violating of the law could be charged with a misdemeanor.
Keep Your Missiles Away From Buses Here
It is expressly forbidden to "hurl missiles" at or into any bus or terminal in Utah — unless you're a peace officer.
"The prohibition of this section does not apply to elected or appointed peace officers or commercial security personnel who discharge firearms or hurl missiles in the course and scope of their employment," the law states.
Believe in Something or Else Don't Plan on Running for Office in This State
No atheists allowed in Texas's political circles. People wanting to run for office must acknowledge the "Supreme Being," according to state legislature. Those who do not could be subjected to religious tests.
Leave Sasquatch Alone if You Spot Him in This State
In Washington State, "any premeditated, willful and wanton slaying harassing or any malicious activities upon" Sasquatch or other yet-to-be discovered subspecies is a felony punishable by a fine and/or imprisonment. Found guilty of hurting Bigfoot? You could face a fine of up to $100,000 and up to 10 years in prison.
No Ferrets While Hunting in This State
In West Virginia, don't take a ferret as a hunting dog substitution if you want to stay out of trouble. Anyone caught hunting a wild animal or bird with a ferret will face a fine of no less than $100 and no more than $500, and up to 100 days in jail.
In Need of False Teeth? You May Need Hubby's Permission if You Live Here
In Vermont, women needing false teeth must first get permission from their husbands to do so.
The rule was a result of the case Gilman v. Andrus, where in 1856, a man was ordered to pay for "a plate of mineral teeth" prepared for his wife. After the case was tried, Vermont legislature created a common law requiring women to provide dentists with written permission from their husbands in order to wear dentures.
The case has apparently never been overturned, but the law is no longer enforced.
Like Shooting Fish in a Barrel? Think Again
In Wyoming, it is illegal to use a firearm to fish.
Bad Cheese Is Criminal in This State
In Wisconsin, cheeses that are state-certified, including cheddar, Colby, Monterey Jack and Muenster, must legally be "fine, highly pleasing and free from undesirable flavors and odors," legislature states.
Leave Animals Alone on Sundays in This State — Unless It's a Raccoon
In Virginia, hunting animals on Sundays is against the law, as the day is considered "a rest day for all species of wild bird and wild animal life," the law states. There is one exception: Raccoons may be hunted until 2 a.m. on Sundays.