Weirdest Laws In Utah

The laws and social compacts we hold with reverence today might be rendered obsolete in a generation or two. After all, we live in a constantly changing and evolving world, full of a population whose wants and needs change with regularity. 

As laws are meant to protect the people and their property, it begs the question as to why certain laws were ever put on the books, to begin with. From laws prohibiting more than four unrelated women living together in Missouri (via Stupid Laws) to laws against hunting camels in the state of Arizona (via Ranker), one might conclude that lawmakers were off their crock generations ago when these laws were proposed. 

Most of the time, however, there's a rational (though sometimes unfair) reason for old laws and ordinances that we perceive as weird under the lens of modern society. Every state has laws that can be considered out of vogue, and certainly, all 50 states have their fair share of laws that could be considered outright bizarre. Throughout this article, you'll find that the Beehive State is no exception.

Don't bother certain workers

One weird law still on the books in Utah is one that prohibits driving a herd of animals down any city street. Of course, this is permissible if the mayor gives you consent (per Only in Your State). 

In the rare instance that you might encounter a milkman, be sure to give them plenty of personal space. It's against the law to pester them while on duty. And if you are in the city of Price, Utah, don't even think about speaking to the city engineer while he/she is working. Any communication from this person needs to be initiated by them, not you. 

If you have a household pet that passes away in Utah, you'll want to be sure you properly bury it. But be sure to do this within 48 hours of the pet's demise, or you'll violate the law if you live in the town of Saint George. 

If this ambulance is rockin'

As is the case with most states in the union, many of the archaic laws we scratch our heads about today were meant to keep women subservient. In the small community of Logan, it is considered unlawful for women to use profanity. There's also a state law that will hold the husband legally responsible for any crimes committed by his wife (via Stupid Laws). 

Planning on dancing with your partner? Be sure that there is some daylight between your bodies. The lambada won't be tolerated here.

In one twisted law on the books, having sexual intercourse in an ambulance is a punishable offense — for the woman. The man will not be charged for engaging in the act. The woman is not only in legal trouble, but adding to her humiliation is a stipulation in this law that requires her name to be published in the newspaper (via Stupid Laws). 

What is probably the most ridiculous law still on the books in Utah is one that prohibits fornication. So if you are unmarried and engaged in "the act," it's still technically a punishable offense (per HuffPost). 

There are a lot of laws regarding alcohol

The state of Utah as a whole seems to have the lion's share of weird laws. When the Mormons moved into the territory in the late 19th century, they carried with them a deeply rooted religious faith that has undoubtedly helped to mold many of the laws that were initially passed. Many of them are still on the books to this day. 

When it comes to alcohol, Mormons not only abstain from consumption, they had their state legislature make it harder for others to imbibe. The state of Utah forbids beverages to be sold that contain more than 3.2% alcohol (via Stupid Laws). Possession of beer is okay in this state, provided that the container has less than 2 liters of the beverage within it. If you're a retailer, you are excluded from this law.

Should the governor of Utah declare an emergency, then all alcohol sales must cease. This state law prohibits not only the sale of alcohol during such a time, but also makes it illegal to "otherwise furnish" alcohol to another person. Just in case you were considering a creative trade, you might want to hold off.

Enjoying wine with your meal at a restaurant in Utah is perfectly fine. But you have to ask for a wine list before being offered a glass.

More statewide weirdness

Traveling on the highways throughout the state of Utah? One state law gives birds the legal right of way (via Stupid Laws). Just in case you are taking a relaxing fishing expedition while staying, you'll need a license, as you would in most states. Just be aware that you will get into some legal trouble if you decide to fish from atop a horse. Don't say you weren't warned. 

Speaking of fishing, don't let the game warden catch you by using corn or hominy as bait. That sort of tomfoolery isn't going to fly in Utah.

Should you have an unbridled desire to marry that cousin of yours that you've been sweet on for all these years, Utah law will allow it. The only catch here is that you both have to be over the age of 50. It's supposed that lawmakers in this state only discouraged incest between cousins if the woman was of childbearing years (via Stupid Laws).

Planning on riding a bicycle? That's totally legal in Utah. Just be sure that you keep BOTH hands on the handlebars. One hand or no hands will surely get you a ticket (via Only in Your State). 

Want to hunt a whale? Think again

Sometimes, you have to wonder if a law might have been passed because of one foolish person who orchestrated an unfortunate incident. This might explain why it's against the law for a pharmacist in Utah to sell gunpowder to cure headaches (via Stupid Laws). Or why it's illegal in Salt Lake City to advertise an upcoming auction by hiring trombone players to play on the streets.

Boxing is a popular sport all over the United States, and it can be enjoyed in Utah. But state law forbids any boxing match that allows biting your opponent.  Also, to the disappointment of Captain Ahab, there will be no whale hunting. Not in this landlocked state that's a thousand miles from any ocean. 

Just in case you were wondering, you are legally allowed to possess a nuclear weapon. But don't let the authorities catch you detonating it. That's against the law in Utah.