Quirky New July Laws Take Effect

A bunch ofquirky new July laws took effect on Sunday across numerous states, and the good eggs at CNN took the trouble of finding the kookiest.

From now on, it transpires Kentuckians who buy ‘Prisoner of War’ and ‘Missing in Action’ flags to be displayed in public institutions must ensure said flags are made in the United States, while New Mexico stores and restaurants are not allowed to claim their fresh chili peppers are New Mexico chilies unless they were grown in the state itself.

Elsewhere, Georgian drivers now have the option of affixing a decal with the slogan “In God We Trust” on license plates, in place of the county where they live (no word on other deities) and Floridians are forbidden from shackling women who are incarcerated during a pregnancy or who have very recently given birth. Oh, and folks in Kentucky are now prohibited from releasing feral hogs into the wild. AT LAST.

Of course, it’s all relative: while CNN may think it odd for cab drivers to be able to charge sick passengers a $50 vomit cleanup fee, that sort of rule has been around for years in this writer’s native UK.

And the new Massachusetts law banning the disposal of medical sharps (needles, syringes and so forth) in household trash … well, good common sense, surely?

The halfway point of 2012 signals the start of new laws across the United States, but none of these have anything on a selection of quirky laws uncovered in Britain’s statute books a few years back: these included taxi drivers being required to ask all passengers if they have smallpox or the plague, and any person found breaking a boiled egg at the sharp end being sentenced to 24 hours in the village stocks.