So, just for a touch of fun, consider sharing with your grandchildren some actual laws in some of our states. For example, did you know . . .
- It is illegal to build, maintain, or use a nuclear weapon within Chico, California city limits. A law which began in the ‘80s as a serious anti-nuke statement has taken on a second life as an Internet joke, mainly due to the purported consequences: In addition to self-annihilation, the infraction also carries a $500 fine.
- A pickle cannot be sold unless it bounces. According to a 1948 article, this law became a necessity after two scheming pickle packers tried to sell pickles “unfit for human consumption” on the sly. Connecticut’s Food and Drug Commissioner at the time proclaimed a real pickle “should bounce” when dropped from the height of one foot, leading to a new state regulation.
- For chicken chompers in Gainesville, Georgia, “finger-lickin’” is not a suggestion—it is mandatory. Thanks to a 1961 law added to the city code as a publicity stunt, it is illegal to eat fried chicken in “the poultry capital of the world” with anything other than your fingers.
- In Oklahoma it is illegal to promote, engage in, or be employed by a “horse tripping” event. Also, it is unlawful to wrestle a bear… but at that point, the law is the least of your worries.
- In Prince William County Virginia, it is illegal to keep a skunk as a pet. Man, this law stinks!
- It is illegal to poach a Sasquatch in at least two Washington counties. In 1991, Whatcom Country declared its roughly one million acres of land an official Sasquatch Protection and Refuge Area, giving our nation its first Bigfoot Sanctuary. If Bigfoot exists, lawmakers reasoned, it would be an endangered species, and therefore in need of protection. For this reason, Skamania County has considered Bigfoot-poaching a felony since 1969—still punishable by a $1000 fine.
- Giving credence to its reputation as “America’s Dairyland,” Wisconsin law demands all cheese and butter produced in the state be “highly pleasing.” Oh, and cows have the right-of-way on highways.
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