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In The Books

Posted on Sunday, October 20 at 21:12 by jmjinks

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As Canadians, we pride ourselves as intelligent and honourable people. Every day, new laws are passed at the federal, provincial and municipal levels to protect our interests as new developments come to pass. But what about the old laws? If you were to look back one hundred years ago, the average life was so much different that is it is now. Many of the laws passed back then would seem silly to us by today’s standards. Yet somehow, some of these laws remain intact. The fine people at have compiled lists of laws that still remain in the lawbooks, but perhaps shouldn’t.

For example., under Candian law, you may not pay for a fifty-cent item with only pennies. It is also illegal in Canada for clear or non-dark sodas to contain caffeine. And as a matter of health concerns, citizens may not publicly remove bandages.

Halloween time may be fund for some, but other may want to be extra cautious not to break the law. For example, you may want to avoid having your daughter dress up as a witch. It is illegal to pretend to practice witchcraft. You may also want to avoid wearing really scary masks around your sickly grandfather. It is also illegal to kill a sick person by frightening them.

Have you ever considered visiting New Brunswick. Well, better leave the car home. Driving on the roads is not allowed in the province of New Brunswick. And if you think the lawn needs watering, think twice if you live in Nova Scotia. According to the law books, a person may not water his/her lawn when it is raining.

The legislature in Alberta is very pro-horse. Businesses must provide rails for tying up horses, and if you are released from prison, it is required that you are given a handgun with bullets and a horse, so you can ride out of town. In theory, it is not illegal to play craps in Alberta. However, according to the law, you can’t use dice to play craps. And if you are thinking of prettying up the old homestead, be fore-warned. Wooden logs may not be painted.

In the province of Quebec, margarine producers can't make their margarine yellow. In Montréal, the Queen Elizabeth Hotel must feed your horse freely when you rent a room. And in an effort to keep the streets clean, citizens may not relieve themselves or spit on the street. If they do, it is punishable by a fine of over $100.

The lawmarkers in Ontario are most definitely the worst culprits for the more unusual laws. When visiting Guelph, you may want to consider not drinking too much water. The city is classified as a no-pee zone. It must be tough to be a kid in Oshawa; as it's illegal to climb trees. I’d also want to be careful when taking the special someone to Wawa where it is illegal to show public affection on Sunday. And the city bylaws in Etobicoke state that no more than 3.5 inches of water is allowed in a bathtub.

Homeowners throughout the province have strange matters to deal with. Homeowners in both Oshawa and Gananoque are responsible for clearing snow off of municipal sidewalks. Residents in Cobourg must have their water troughs filled by 5:00 am, if they have one in their front yard.

Kanata is covered with strange bylaws. The color of house and garage doors is regulated by city bylaws (a purple door get you a fine). It is also illegal to have a clothes line in your backyard, and you can't work on your car in the street.

And if you think these laws are restricted to the only the smaller towns and cities, think again. In Toronto, you can't drag a dead horse down Yonge Street on a Sunday. And in our nation’s capital, Ottawa, it is illegal to eat ice-cream on Bank Street on a Sunday.

In closing, while some of these laws have been passed with the best of intentions and some are fairly out-dated, we shouldn’t take ourselves too seriously. The police have much better things to do with their time then following you home on a Sunday night because of an ice cream cone or a little peck in the cheek, however things could be worse. In Singapore, the sale of gum is prohibited, failure to flush a public toilet after use may result in very hefty fines, oral sex is illegal unless it is used as a form of foreplay, and If convicted of littering three times, you will have to clean the streets on Sundays with a bib on saying, "I am a litterer." This will then be broadcasted on the local news.

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