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Strange Laws

What Not to Do in Arkansas

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Everyone has come across a law that they didn't agree with or that they thought was just plain stupid. We have to hold our breath and follow the laws anyway (often mumbling, "they paid someone to invent this law?"). However, many sources report that there are some laws on Arkansas books that seem so useless that you have to wonder about the people that wrote them. Some of you probably break the law every day! Please note that some of these are old laws that are no longer valid and many have not been confirmed as being true laws. It's just for fun.

One law that would have came in handy in November is the law that states, "No person shall be permitted under any pretext to come nearer then fifty feet of any door or window of any polling room from the opening of the polls until the certification of the returns." If only Florida had laws like Arkansas, the election mess would have been solved easily. Recount the votes? No way, just throw them all out. They were all illegal votes!

Some Arkansas laws are unenforceable and redundant. One of them states that the Arkansas River can rise no higher than the Main Street bridge in Little Rock. I guess we're supposed to arrest the river for disobeying? How does a river pay a fine? It's illegal to kill any "living creature" in Fayetteville. However killing inanimate objects is perfectly okay. So go out there and kill yourself a mailbox!

Don't get too happy about your new found freedom. You might be excited enough to honk your car horn. Just watch out when and where you do it. It is illegal for a person to sound the horn on a vehicle at any place where cold drinks or sandwiches are served after 9:00 P.M. Just be sure to kill a mailbox in a residential area.

My favorite law is one designed to get Northerners into trouble. That's right folks, if you mispronounce Arkansas (Ar-kan-saw) you're in for a fine or jail time. Just be sure not to flirt with those Northerners as you tell them they are breaking the law. In Little Rock, flirtation between men and women on the streets may result in a 30-day jail term. You might get to share a cozy cell together. Be careful. Don't get extremely cozy in that cell. Oral sex is considered sodomy in Arkansas and is punishable.

Animals in Arkansas get the weirdest laws. If you live in Arkansas, you may not keep an alligator in your bathtub. I guess lawmakers saw the move Alligator once too often. Dog owners in Little Rock beware! If your dog barks after 6 PM you can be fined. The dog can be impounded. Cow owners should take heed too. Bessie may need her exercise but even cows deserve Sunday's off. It's unlawful to walk your cow after 1:00 on Sundays.

Women are also a popular subject for laws. Some old Arkansas laws are archaic. There is a law that states female teachers who bob their hair cannot be given a raise. Even more degrading is an old law that states a man can beat his wife in Little Rock provided he does it with a stick no bigger than 3 inches across and not more than once a month.

Arkansas may be a redneck state but at least we're not Tennessee. In Tennessee it is legal to gather and consume road kill and it is illegal for someone pulling up to a stop sign to refuse to fire a gun out of the window. Residents of Newark, New Jersey do this without a law. They should move to Tennessee.

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