The Most Arcane State Laws in America

Bizarre, Funny, NakedLaw

You may have heard about Florida Representative Ritch Workman, who wants to repeal his state’s law against drunken dwarf tossing. According to Workman, legally preventing intoxicated rednecks from chucking little people in bars is a violation of civil rights.

As appalling (and, frankly, crazypants) as Rep. Workman’s proposal is, plenty of legislators in every state of the union have come up with—and passed—laws that make you think “WTF?

These laws will not only make you wonder what sort of brownies lawmakers were eating when they passed them, but whether anyone ever gets busted for them anymore.


It is illegal to wear a fake mustache in church that causes “unseemly” laughter.


It is illegal to wake a sleeping bear in order to take a photo of it, although you can go ahead and shoot it with a gun if you want.


Arizona is extra strict, prohibiting camel hunting, the housing of donkeys in bathtubs, and refusing a glass of water to a person who asks for one. In addition, Arizona strictly limits the number of…um…dildos to two per household.


In Arkansas, a man may only legally beat his wife once a month. Also, you aren’t allowed to keep an alligator in your bathtub.


California prohibits women from driving while wearing housecoats, and all animals are banned from mating publicly within 1,500 feet of a tavern, school, or place of worship. Squirrels, get behind that bush!


In Denver, you can be arrested for mistreating rats, lending your vacuum cleaner to your neighbor, and performing acrobatics that might frighten a horse.


Bicycles may not be ridden over 65 mph in Connecticut, and don’t even think about walking across the street on your hands, because it is strictly prohibited by law.

District of Columbia

Small boys can be busted for throwing stones in D.C., even if they aren’t throwing them at certain deserving members of Congress.


In Delaware, it is against the law to pawn a wooden leg. All bets are off for fiberglass, though.


Florida has a number of interesting laws, including the prohibition of farting in public after 6:00 pm, having sex with a porcupine, and singing in public while wearing a swimsuit. In addition, men can be fined for wearing a strapless gown in public, and women for falling asleep under a hair dryer at a salon. Unmarried women can be arrested and jailed for parachuting on a Sunday.


In Georgia, it is illegal to carry an ice cream cone in your back pocket on Sundays. Also, sex toys are banned altogether (though you could send them to Arizona.)


It is illegal in Hawaii to put pennies in your ear.


If you are giving your sweetie a box of candy as a romantic gesture, by Idaho law it must weigh more than 50 lbs. Obviously that one was pushed through by the Boxed Candymakers of America lobby.


The legal state language of Illinois is “American,” not English.


In Indiana, it is illegal to go to a cinema, the theater, or ride a streetcar within four hours of eating garlic. Also, bathing in the winter is strictly prohibited.


State law in Iowa says that kisses may last up to, but not beyond, five minutes. Also, no Iowa establishment may charge admission to see a one-armed piano player.


Kansas cares about the animals. State laws prohibit shooting rabbits from motorboats, using mules to hunt ducks, and catching fish with your bare hands.


In Kentucky, a woman may only appear in a bathing suit on a highway if she is escorted by two or more police officers, armed with a club, or weighs less than 90 or more than 200 lbs. Horses, however, are specifically exempt from this law.


Louisiana specifically prohibits public gargling.


In Maine, you can be fined for leaving Christmas decorations up later than January 14th.


It is illegal in Maryland for lions to attend the theatre.


Massachusetts state law prohibits even married couples from sleeping nude in a rented room, men from wearing a goatee without a license, and anyone from dueling with water guns.


In Michigan, a woman’s hair legally belongs to her husband and she must get his permission to cut it.


In Minnesota, you may not enter the state with a duck or a chicken on your head, you may not tease skunks, and women who impersonate Santa Claus can be jailed for up to 30 days.


It is illegal in Mississippi for a male to be aroused in public. Apparently teenage boys must carry a math book with them at all times.


Missouri prohibits oral sex, but not all is lost: the state considers drunkenness “an inalienable right.”


In Montana, sheep are only allowed to ride in the cab of a truck if they have a chaperone. Also, unmarried women are not allowed to fish alone in Montana, and married women may not fish alone on Sundays.


The parents of children who burp during church services can be arrested in Nebraska.


Nevada prohibits driving camels on the highway.

New Jersey

In New Jersey, you can be arrested for frowning at a police officer or slurping your soup.

New Hampshire

New Hampshire state law prohibits foot-tapping, head-bopping, or any other manner of keeping time to music in a tavern, café, or restaurant.

New Mexico

In New Mexico, it is illegal for females to appear unshaven in public. Does that mean legs, or face, or…what?

New York

In New York, flirting with a woman is illegal, punishable by a $25 fine, specifically including turning and “looking at a woman in that way.” Oh, that way.

North Carolina

North Carolina has a law against possessing a lottery ticket ($2,000 fine!), becoming a professional fortune-teller, singing off key, and using an elephant to plow a cotton field. Also, it is illegal in North Carolina for organizations to hold a meeting while members are in costume.

North Dakota

Not only is it illegal to serve beer and pretzels at the same time in any North Dakota bar or restaurant, but you also can get in big trouble with the cops for lying down and falling asleep with your shoes on. Binge drinkers, beware!


Ohio prohibits more than four women from living in a house together.


You can be fined and/or jailed in Oklahoma for making “ugly faces” at dogs.


In Oregon it is illegal to bathe without wearing clothing that covers you from neck to knee. How you’re supposed to get clean that way is beyond us.


Pennsylvania law states that “Any motorist who sights a team of horses coming toward him must pull well off the road, cover his car with a blanket or canvas that blends with the countryside, and let the horses pass.

If the horses appear skittish, the motorist must take his car apart, piece by piece, and hide it under the nearest bushes.”

On the bright side, if you need any spare car parts, you could probably find some in the bushes along Pennsylvania roads.

Rhode Island

In Rhode Island, it is illegal to bite off another person’s leg or throw pickle juice at a trolley.

South Carolina

South Carolina law states that if a man promises to marry an unmarried woman, he’s legally obliged to actually do it.

South Dakota

It is illegal in South Dakota to lie down and fall asleep in a cheese factory.


Tennessee law prohibits catching a fish with a lasso, but gathering and eating roadkill is allowed.


In Texas, you can get arrested for selling your eye, taking more than 3 sips of beer at a time while standing, or owning more than 6 dildos.


In Utah, not only do birds have the right of way on all highways, but it is also against the law to fish from horseback.


In Vermont, you are legally required to take at least one bath per week, specifically on Saturday night.


Virginia prohibits sex with the lights on, tickling, and hunting on Sundays except for raccoons, but only until 2:00 am.


In Washington State, not only are lollipops banned, but it is illegal to pretend your parents are rich.

West Virginia

West Virginia law states that it is okay for a man to have sex with any animal under 40 lbs. However, snoozing on a train and whistling underwater are both prohibited.


In Wisconsin it is illegal to kiss on a train or cut a woman’s hair.


Wyoming prohibits women from standing within 5 feet of a bar when drinking. You can also get busted for taking a picture of a rabbit January through April.