Strange Laws of Hawaii

Hawaii is the youngest of the United States, being granted statehood in 1959.  The state motto is “the life of the land is perpetuated in righteousness”, taken from the royal motto of Hawaii back when it was its own sovereign kingdom.  It is a place rich in cultural history, a place of breath-taking beauty, a place of historical significance, a place of mystery and awe.

And, a place for the slightly strange.

Hawaii’s Administrative rules, Section 4-71, make it illegal to introduce “exotic animals for private use” onto the island.  Specifically listed are lions, and brown bears.  Just what the private use of these animals would be is unclear.

A law dating back to 1965 bans billboards from the Island: “No person shall erect, maintain, or use a billboard or display any outdoor advertising device.”  There is an exception for billboards advertising houses for sale, but only when the house is open for viewing to potential buyers.  After the open house the billboard must be taken down.

Coins are not allowed to be carried in one’s ears in the state of Hawaii.  You can carry coins in your swimtrunks, but then it’s also illegal to appear in public wearing only your swimtrunks (it is illegal for men to bare their chests in public areas), so you’ll need a shirt too.

It is illegal to drink in public in Hawaii.  This includes public beaches and state parks, so forget that image of you lying on the white sand of Hawaii drinking a mai tai.

A somewhat archaic law means that you might be fined for NOT owning a boat in Hawaii.

No one in Hawaii can own a mongoose without first obtaining a permit.  You may be asking the question right now, how did the mongoose get to the island in the first place?

Off-duty Hawaiian police officers can be hired out for security details, traffic control, or escorts of vehicles.  The assignments are given out by means of an online bidding system to the officers.  The police department refers to this as the “Special Duty” program. however, they do not allow officers to be hired for bodyguard details.

There is a national historical park in Kalaupapa, Hawaii, to preserve the memory of two leper colonies at that location.   

And let’s not forget: there are Interstate Highways on Hawaii, H-1, H-2, and H-3, even though they can’t go to any other state because, after all, it is an island.