Quiz: Can You Match the State to Its Crazy Law?: HowStuffWorks
Can You Match the State to Its Crazy Law?
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By: Jonnathan Chadwick
6 Min Quiz
Image: Paul Souders/ DigitalVision/ Getty Images
About This Quiz
Because of really creative criminals or purely coincidental circumstances, America is filled with a bunch of crazy laws. Most of the crazy laws you hear about are misinterpretations of court rulings. Somewhere between the actual crime and the record of the crime, somebody confused the exact specifics of the ruling as a part of the law. Let's say somebody is convicted of a crime where the details of the case say they got up and sang in a movie theater on a Tuesday afternoon. Somehow the pattern of facts will get reported as a law, but rarely do governments enact laws like "no singing in movie theaters on Tuesday afternoon."
With that being said, some crazy laws are real laws. Some of them are just so old it's easier to leave them on the books than remove them. Very few crazy laws are ever enforced and most are never implemented, but that doesn't mean they aren't on the books. You'd be surprised how many laws you might've broken without even knowing it. If you ever honked your horn, swore in public or played pinball, you might have broken a law. It all depends on the state in which you were in when you did so. Take a look at these crazy laws, and see if you can match them to their state.
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In what state is it illegal to place your couch on your porch?
Apparently the police in Boulder, Colorado, were fed up with college kids burning couches, so they put this law into effect. This Colorado law applies to all indoor furniture, like chairs and mattresses as well. It's illegal to place indoor furniture anywhere in your yard.
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In what state is it illegal to share your Netflix password with a friend?
The "Tennessee Login Law" has been around since 2011 and is one of the country's most infamous. It prevents people from sharing login info — like usernames and passwords — for online services like Netflix and iTunes.
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Can you name the state where it's illegal to drink and dance at a bar that doesn't have an amusement license?
Entertainment establishments need a host of licenses to have any fun, and in Maine, bar owners who want patrons to drink and dance need to hold an amusement license. There's no dancing allowed at bars that serve alcohol and don't have amusement licenses.
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It's unlawful to sell your car on Sunday in which of these states?
According to the Michigan Legislature, the first day of the week (Sunday) is meant for spending time with family. It's unlawful to sell or trade a new or used car on any Sunday. All car dealerships in the state are expected to be closed.
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July 4th is one of country's 10 federal holidays. In what state is it illegal to get arrested on July 4th?
The Ohio Revised Code states no one can get arrested on July 4th in Ohio, but this law is never enforced. If you commit a crime in Ohio on July 4th, you'll get arrested or fined. The law also states no one shall be arrested on Sunday.
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In what state is it illegal to let a donkey sleep in a bathtub?
Donkeys haven't been allowed to sleep in Arizona bathtubs since about 1924. The law was enacted after a donkey, a bathtub and a local flood caused a bunch of problems for the community in the 1920s.
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America is home to many types of bears. Which state prohibits bear wrestling?
Almost every weird law in America that regards animals is put in place for the animals' safety, and this is another one. Bear wrestling is illegal in Missouri. It's also illegal to host bear wrestling tournaments or to train bears to wrestle.
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In which of these states is it illegal to sell dog hair?
You're not allowed to trim your pet cat or dog's hair and sell it if you live in Delaware. It's an animal cruelty prevention law. You can, however, sell the hair if you get your pet's hair trimmed at a licensed establishment.
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Do you know the state that requires certain cheeses to be "fine" and "highly pleasing"?
Wisconsin takes its cheese seriously and is known as the cheese capital of America. In order for certain Wisconsin cheeses to be labeled as such, they have to be "highly pleasing." Wisconsin produces about 3 billion pounds of cheese a year.
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Where is confetti illegal?
Confetti is just a bunch of tiny pieces of plastic that don't disintegrate and sit around forever. Mobile, Alabama, has outlawed the party treat. It has also outlawed Silly String. Both products do nothing but cause a mess.
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There are many species of deer in the country. In what state is it illegal to hunt an albino deer?
Albino deer have white fur and pink eyes and noses. The rare mutations make them a prized trophy for some, but in Tennessee, it's illegal to hunt an albino deer. Anyone who is spotted hunting an albino deer should be reported to the local wildlife agency.
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Can you name the state where it's illegal to play pinball under the age of 18?
South Carolina still states no one under the age of 18 is allowed to play pinball in the state. The full law is explained in chapter 19 of the state's Juvenile Justice Code, but the law is never enforced.
Horn honking is annoying. Do you know where it's illegal to honk your horn except in an emergency?
New York City drivers face a $350 fine for honking their horn for no reason, and the NYPD does enforce the law. Very rarely is there a true reason to honk your car's horn. It should be used for emergencies.
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In which of these states is it illegal to tell somebody's fortune without a license?
In order to ensure Massachusetts has only the most trustworthy fortune tellers, anyone wanting to make money telling fortunes must obtain a license. No "pretended fortune telling" is allowed in the state.
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Do you know the state where it's illegal to take a selfie with a tiger?
This seems like a law put in effect to keep humans safe, but it's also put in effect for animal safety. The law was created to apply to traveling zoos and circuses that allow people to take photographs with dangerous animals.
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Can you name the state where it's illegal for your pet to ride in the back of an open vehicle?
Alaska's Code of Ordinances says only animals tethered to the vehicle can ride in an open vehicle. If you're driving an open-back vehicle with 46-inch walls, you can also let your pet sit in the back. The law was put in place for safety reasons
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Do you know the state where it's illegal to play more than 10 hours of bingo per week?
Bingo is one of the most popular games around the country, but bingo halls in North Carolina are only allowed to hold two five-hour sessions per week, and they can't be held within the same 48 hours. Not all bingo games have to follow these rules.
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Can you name the state where it's prohibited to go hunting in a cemetery?
Some cemeteries are so big you may be in the middle of one without even knowing it. This law was put in place after a hunter decided to harvest his kill right in the middle of the cemetery where he caught it.
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In what state do you face 30 days in jail for swearing in the presence of two or more people?
Mississippi isn't the only state in the country with public decency laws like this. Unlike other states, this law requires at least two witnesses to be present at the time of the swearing. Violators can face 30 days in jail.
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If you wanted to order a surprise pizza to a friend's house, you could do so in all but which of these states?
Louisiana eventually put this law in place to stop prank callers. If you order and pay for a surprise pizza, it's a nice gesture. If your order a bunch of pizzas to an unsuspecting person's home, it's a crime.
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In what state is it illegal to go trick-or-treating over the age of 12?
There comes a time in all of our lives when we're too old to go trick-or-treating, and in Virginia, that age is 12. States and cities all over the country have Halloween laws that help keep the holiday safe for everyone.
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In what state is it illegal to win 26 free games of pinball from the same machine?
A pinball machine in Arkansas is not allowed to pay out more than 25 free games of pinball. If you win a 26th free game, state law says you have to use a different machine. The pinball machines should be programmed to only pay out 25 free games.
Can you name the state that fines people $1 for swearing in public?
There are a few states around the country that enforce public decency laws like this. The fine for swearing in public in West Virginia is $1. Unfortunately, this law is never enforced, but it's one of the best in the country.
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Do you know the state where fortune telling is illegal?
Many states around the country have some sort of law surrounding fortune telling. Fortune telling has been banned in Maryland for decades. Some towns have reversed the ban, and some groups are trying to lift the statewide ban altogether.
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Can you name the place where it's illegal to sit on the sidewalk?
It's illegal to sit on the sidewalk in downtown Reno, Nevada. The law is an attempt to prevent vagrants from cluttering the downtown area. Cities across the country have put similar actions into effect.
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Can you name the state where it's illegal to live on a boat for more than a month?
Georgia is home to plenty of waterways where people can easily park their boat and live. The problem is it causes pollution, and in an effort to keep the waterways clean in Georgia, people can only live on their boat for 30 days at a time.
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What's the name of the east coast state where driver's aren't allowed to pump their own gas?
Some people enjoy pumping their own gas, but self-service pumps have been banned in New Jersey since 1949. The ban came about after gas station owners lobbied for it. It helps keep gas stations safer and helps owners make more money.
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In what state is it unlawful to drive around with dirty car tires?
Minnesota's laws say drivers can't drive around with dirty tires that deposit mud, and dirty or sticky substances. The violation is a misdemeanor in the state and comes with a fine. Traffic laws across the country vary state by state.
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In what state is it illegal to secretly listen to your co-workers gossip?
There are many eavesdropping laws across the country. If you secretly linger around a building in an attempt to overhear some juicy gossip and then use that gossip to harm another, you're guilty of a crime in Oklahoma.
Where is it illegal to cause static between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m.?
It's unlawful to cause static between these hours because static can interfere with radio and television broadcasts. You have to generate a lot of static for it to be significant. The static in your wool sweater isn't enough to cause a crime.
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Can you name the state where it's illegal to ride a horse faster than 10 mph?
A law in Indiana says "no horse shall be driven or ridden on any street in the city at a speed in excess of ten (10) miles per hour." Horses must also never be left unattended and must be kept under control at all times.
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In what state is it illegal to test the speed of your horse on the highway?
The maximum penalty for racing or testing the speed of your horse on a Rhode Island highway is a $20 fine and 10 days in jail. The law has been on the books since the 19th century. Horses are allowed on the roads in America, but riding one on the highway is illegal everywhere.
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Can you name the state where it's illegal to have a pet rat?
Montana law says it's unlawful to gift or raise a rat for any reason other than using it as prey for snakes or birds. Selling, raising or giving away rats is illegal in the state. Rats can be kept for research and educational purposes.
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Do you know the state where it's illegal to screech your car tires?
Statewide law in Kansas prohibits drivers from screeching their tires while driving. The misdemeanor comes with a $500 fine and carries a maximum sentence of 30 days behind bars. The noise is considered a public disturbance.
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The Star Spangled Banner became the national anthem in 1931. In what state will you be fined $100 for playing a remix of the Star Spangled Banner?
You're not allowed to play a remix of the Star Spangled Banner at any public venue in Massachusetts. Doing so will result in a $100 fine. Senators and representatives across the country have proposed similar laws.
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