Strangest Laws in Vermont

Every fall, tourists flock to Vermont to see the beautiful changing foliage. What these visitors may not know might actually get them into trouble in beautiful Vermont. There are little known laws that are still on the books. Although these laws are not being enforced, they are still real laws. These laws may seem strange to us, but probably made perfect sense to those who lived years ago. In Vermont, there are several laws worth some discussion. Some of these laws spoke on faith, home life, vehicles, animals and delivery men. No topic was left outside of the laws.

For instance, there is a law that says, “It is illegal to deny the existence of God.” Today, we take it for granted that most believe in God. We also take it for granted that those who don’t believe will not be arrested for their personal belief. Yet, years ago it was not popular to dissent from the faith.

Another stated that, “Residents are not allowed to eat more than six meals per day.” Also, “It is obligatory for residents to take at least one bath each week. This should be done on a Saturday night.” Can you imagine the government telling you when to eat or when to bathe? Apparently, it was necessary to regulate water usage back then. It was also necessary to talk about hygiene publicly because there were only so many doctors who could treat diseases. If the residents did not take care of themselves, sickness, starting with one person, could wipe out an entire town. It also might have been necessary to regulate food because the towns depended on certain items coming from other towns.

Some other laws worth mentioning included: “Rutland: Cars are forbidden from backfiring. Women must obtain written permission from their husbands if they wish to wear false teeth. It is illegal to tie a giraffe to a telephone pole. It is against the law to give a baby a ‘comforter’ or ‘dummy’. Doves must not be kept in a freezer. Delivery men must walk backwards in driveways of a house worth more than 500,000.” As I mentioned before, these laws seem very strange to us, but probably made sense to those who lived back then. Why would a woman have to ask her husband about her teeth? He was probably the one who had to pay for it. Perhaps it was not popular for women to wear false teeth back then and so her husband would have to decide if he wanted to be seen with a woman with false teeth.

In conclusion, the laws of yesterday seem very strange to modern thinkers, but some of the modern laws would probably also seem strange to those who lived back then. Who would have heard of seat belts in cars or having it written in law that you have to wear one? Laws were written to be obeyed. Some of these laws, that seemed strange to modern people, served a very good purpose in early Vermont. Today, it is good, for tourists visiting Vermont, that the government has stopped regulating every aspect of life.

By the way, if you live in Vermont and like to cheat on your spouse, then don’t move to Utah. Utah’s state legislation outlaws all intimate relations with anyone but your spouse.

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