10 stupid laws around the world

2012-12-27 10:29
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Christmas Culture

It is probably the biggest festival in the world. The way of celebrating it is different everywhere in the world.

Planning on visiting Africa's last absolute monarchy Swaziland in the New Year? Take heed. The police have recently banned women from wearing miniskirts and midriff-revealing tops saying they provoke rape. Offenders face a six-month jail term under the ban which invokes a colonial criminal act dating back to 1889. Wearers of low-rise jeans, you’re also not exempt.

Turns out the ban does not apply to traditional costumes worn by young women during ceremonies like the annual Reed Dance, where the ruling King Mswati III chooses a wife. During the ceremony, beaded traditional skirts worn by young bare-breasted virgins only cover the front, leaving the back exposed. Underwear is not allowed. The flamboyant king who already has 13 wives might want to consider asking his police force to start teaching people not to rape rather than criminalising potential victims.

But as we said, Swaziland is not alone in enforcing daft laws.

2. If you’re female and find yourself in the English city of Liverpool, home of The Beatles, be warned you’re only allowed to walk around topless if you happened to be selling exotic fish - at the market.

3. We’re not sure how they’d know about this one but if you find yourself alone in Indonesia – refrain from self-pleasure. Masturbation is strictly forbidden and you run the risk of being beheaded.

4. When nature calls Scotland is the place to be. Simply knock on the first door you see. Local law obliges citizens to allow whoever knocks on their door to use their toilet.

5. Heading to the holiday spot of San Salvador? You may seriously want to reconsider any over-indulging on the alcoholic beverages. Driving under the influence of alcohol is stupid by anybody’s standards but even more so when its punishable by death. The sentence is carried out immediately by a hastily-assembled firing squad. Taxi please?!

6. Have a medical emergency involving your genitalia while in Bahrain? Turns out the law prohibits a gynecologist to look directly at a patient’s organs. He must use mirror reflections to do his job. Okay.

7. If you have a penchant for driving while blindfolded do not head to the state of Alabama. It’s illegal. We were stumped too and would  love to know what prompted this law in the first place.

8. In London people are not allowed to catch a cab if they are infested with the plague. Admittedly they suffered considerable loss during the Black Death – guess they thought this time round they’d be prepared.

9. People travel to Great Britain for all sorts of reasons including a picture pose with the famous royal guardsmen – but this would be a new one. The law allows all pregnant women to deliver their babies in any public place – even allowing the use of a policeman’s helmet if necessary.

10. In Kentucky people are prohibited from withholding firearms if they are longer than 6 feet. As a tourist/serial-killer you’re perfectly okay though if your weapon of choice is shorter than 1.8 meters.

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