Did you know that in Texas, “One must acknowledge a supreme being before being able to hold public office” (Ref. 1)? How about that it is illegal to sell your eye (Ref. 2)? These are just a couple of the strange laws on the books in the great state of Texas.
Some of these laws are old and outdated and while probably serve no purpose today, they are still on the books. For example, it is illegal for one to shoot a buffalo from the second story of a hotel and it’s also illegal to milk another person’s cow.
Another law (anticrime) requires criminals to give their victims 24 hours notice, either orally or in writing, and to explain the nature of the crime to be committed.
“When two trains meet each other at a railroad crossing, each shall come to a full stop, and neither shall proceed until the other has gone.” This law is just plain stupid, not just crazy or outdated. It’s like a riddle that you just can’t seem to solve.
Of course, some crazy laws in Texas are for individual cities only and not state-wide. For example, in Austin, wire cutters cannot be carried in your pocket. In El Paso, urinating on the streets is illegal. (Why is this not state-wide?)
In Borger, it is against the law to throw confetti, rubber balls, feather dusters, whips or quirts (riding crop), and explosive firecrackers of any kind.
Some of you may have also heard that the Encyclopedia Britannica is banned in Texas due to having a recipe for making home brewed beer. I can find no evidence that this law still exists on the books but I did find notes that the people at Encyclopedia Britannica may have edited this particular version of their encyclopedias to prevent problems such as this. Much of Texas still contains dry or partially dry counties which prohibit the sale of alcohol so it’s not a surprise that the state may have had a problem with such an issue.
Every state has crazy laws. Most people aren’t even aware of these silly laws on the books that aren’t regularly enforced anymore. What about where you live? What crazy laws do you have in your area?
Resources and Further Reading
Texas Facts and Trivia
Dumb Laws – Texas
Ref. 1: The Texas Constitution, Article 1 – BILL OF RIGHTS, Section 4 – RELIGIOUS TESTS
No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office, or public trust, in this State; nor shall any one be excluded from holding office on account of his religious sentiments, provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being.
Ref. 2: 48.02. Prohibition of the Purchase and Sale of Human Organs
Added by Acts 1985, 69th Leg., ch. 40, 1, eff. Aug. 26, 1985. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 900, 1.01, eff. Sept. 1, 1994.