• 9 Strange New Laws for 2013


    On January 1, 400 new federal laws took effect. Meanwhile, state legislatures passed 29,000 bills and resolutions, many of which came into force on the first of the year. Local government added thousands of new laws.

    Ignorance is no excuse, so start cramming on all the weird new regulations you have to follow as of Tuesday:

    1. In California, it's now unlawful to let a dog pursue a bear or bobcat at any time. Previously, exceptions had been made for hunting. Bad news for dogs, good news for bears and bobcats.

    2. The new laws aren't just about banning things! Florida law revised the term "motor vehicle" to exclude swamp buggies, deregulating the primary mode of transportation in that state.

    3. In an assault on the civil rights of crazy cat ladies, residents of Wellington, Kansas are now limited to no more than four cats per household. The hope is that restricting ownership will lower the town's burgeoning cat population.

    4. Fun news: Illinoisans under 21 can drink alcohol now! Less fun: They have to be enrolled in a culinary program to do so.

    5. Film producers in California must have permission from a pediatrician before filming a child under the age of one month. Suddenly, Real Infants of Newport Beach looks less likely to be green-lit.

    6. In the category of "how the hell wasn't this illegal already," California prison workers will no longer be allowed to have sex with inmates.

    7. Sex offenders in Illinois are banned from distributing candy on Halloween or playing Santa or the Easter Bunny.

    8. No more "popping wheelies" on motorcycles in Illinois, but they can run a red light if the coast is clear.

    9. Don't steal grease in North Carolina. Those who steal more than $1,000 worth of grease can be found guilty of a  felony. It's the kind of overcompensation that happens when your state doesn't have mineral or gas deposits.

    If all this sounds like things you did on New Year's Eve, I hope you had fun. No more such hijinks in 2013.

    13 Things Americans Banned in 2012

    Photo by Jim Arbogast/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    Tags: Alcohol, Animals, California, Children, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, North Carolina, Sex, State Legislature


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