5 Weird Laws and Why They're Still on the Books

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Weird laws are commonplace in America, and many people want to know why. The answer? It can be expensive to remove anything that’s been approved in the past, so even laws written hundreds of years ago are still in the books. Here are five of the most bizarre, outrageous state laws in the U.S.

1. What Did You Call Arkansas?

Did you know that Arkansas can be a little sensitive about its name? According to Arkansas Code 1 April 105, it’s illegal to incorrectly pronounce the state’s name. It’s “Ar-kan-saw,” and don’t you forget it while visiting! Actually, this one isn’t enforced. It’s just a weird piece of the state code, originally a resolution expressing the frustration that people in the late 19th century must have felt hearing “Finally, beautiful Our-Kansas!” from newcomers.

As for why it’s still around? It preserves the history of the land. According to history, the Native American settlers were referred to as Arkansas.

2. No Camel Hunting in Nevada


Image via Flickr by Tambako the Jaguar

That’s right! If your game is camel hunting, Nevada is not a welcome state. Actually, there is a reason behind this one. Nevada used to house camels for military training purposes. Supposedly, some got away and paid the price. Apparently, waking up to a camel in your backyard is startling to some.

Why is it still around? We can only speculate. Maybe the government thought it was easier than creating new governance related to military training animals. However, it’s possible that it requires too much paperwork to overwrite.

3. Proper Fried Chicken Etiquette

Image via Flickr by stu_spivack

In Gainesville, Georgia, a woman was nearly arrested for trying to eat fried chicken with a fork. Apparently, it is only legal to eat fried chicken with your bare hands. Any other method is illegal.

Oddly enough, this one is enforced from time to time. The law describes fried chicken as “a culinary delicacy sacred to this municipality, this county, this state, the Southland, and this republic.”

4. It’s Not a Funny Joke


Image via Flickr by codersquid

Why did the chicken cross the road? Because he’s a bad egg. In Quitman, Georgia it’s illegal to allow chickens to cross an open road. This makes sense when you imagine the danger of letting farm animals run about, but even so, why not have a general rule about not letting any animal under your control cross a road?

What is it with chickens and Georgia, you ask? Considering the sacred treatment of fried chicken, maybe chickens deserve better methods of transportation than other animals.

5. No Driving in Las Vegas

Try to picture an officer enforcing this law. It seems ludicrous that these laws are still in existence. However, there is still an old law banning automobiles in the city of Las Vegas due to the noise they made. The citizens were afraid the engines would disturb their horses. Can you imagine the noise control ordinances set in place for Las Vegas in 2014? An automobile is the least of their noise pollution worries.

There you have it. Those are some of the strangest laws in the land. However, there are many more to explore. You may be surprised what ridiculous laws are still in the books for your state. Interested in learning more? Check out a criminal justice master of science program. The possibilities are endless.