State laws are meant to regulate a safe society, and at the time our laws go into effect, in theory, they make sense. However, times change, society evolves, and some irrelevant laws are still technically in effect, even as they sit in the dusty vault of history.
All states have some weird laws from the past, and Alabama is no exception. Let’s take a look at some of these relics just for fun, and to remind ourselves how far we’ve come. Some of these laws are so strange, even personal injury lawyers in Alabama can’t make sense of them.
Alabama Has Some Strangely Specific Laws
In Alabama, dominoes must not be played on Sundays, at least according to the law. It’s also illegal to sell peanuts in Lee County after sundown on Wednesdays. However, if you’re playing dominos on Saturday or selling peanuts in Lee County in the middle of the night on Tuesday, you probably don’t have to keep an eye out for the police.
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Don’t Have Too Much Fun – It’s the Law
A lot of activities we consider to be fun in Alabama today were once against the law. What did Alabama legislators have against fun back then? It’s hard to imagine what could have made them decide to create these laws:
- It’s illegal to wear a fake mustache in a church because it could cause laughter.
- It’s illegal to put ice cream in your back pocket.
- In Mobile, it’s illegal to spray silly string.
- In Mobile, it’s illegal to spit orange peels onto the sidewalk.
Bear Wrestlers Are Out of Luck
In Alabama, it is illegal to wrestle bears, at least if you’re human. There’s no statute prohibiting bears from wrestling each other, but this may be because the state’s legislators haven’t thought to do so, at least not yet. In addition to no bear wrestling, the following laws that don’t make sense are also still on the books in Alabama:
- Putting salt on a railroad track can be punishable by death.
- It’s illegal for a driver to be blindfolded while operating a vehicle.
- It’s legal to drive down a one-way street in the wrong direction as long as you have a lantern attached to your vehicle.
When State Mandates Contradict Old Laws
It’s illegal to wear a mask in public. Yet in 2020, Alabama authorities urged people to ignore this law and wear medical masks in public during the COVID-19 pandemic. This legal contradiction makes mask-wearing both required and prohibited. Now that the pandemic is easing up in the US, we may stop wearing masks, but both laws may still remain on the books.
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Yoga Is Once Again Legal in Alabama Schools
In 1993, yoga was once banned from Alabama public schools because citizens convinced lawmakers that it would put their kids at risk of converting to Hinduism. Governor Kay Ivey signed a bill to end the State Board of Education’s ban on yoga. Students can start taking yoga classes in the 2021-2022 school year, but they aren’t allowed to say, “Namaste.”
But Wait – What About Recent Alabama Laws?
Silly, antiquated laws are fun to discover, but some current Alabama laws, not so much. In fact, Alabama has some of the strictest personal injury laws in the nation. Laws like the Guest Passenger Law and the Collateral Source Rule – can significantly reduce an accident victim’s (or the victim’s family’s) compensation in an injury lawsuit.
If you were injured by someone else’s negligence, these laws might affect your case. The skills and experience of a personal injury lawyer in Alabama could make all the difference in the outcome of your case.
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