We like to believe that laws are enacted for specific, rational reasons. Unless a law is old and ridiculous and has never been taken off the books, of which there are many, we’re bound by them and risk penalties if we disobey.
However, just because something is against the law in the United States does not mean a person can’t get away with it scot-free somewhere else. Another country may have a completely different take on what we consider expressly forbidden. Some of these allowable acts are so severe they’ll have you scratching your head wondering how anything so despicable could even be tolerated much less legal.
1 Strip Those Clothes and Flaunt That Bod in Spain
Europeans flock to the beaches of Spain to golden up their skin tone without the worry of pesky tan lines. Spain has numerous nude beaches where law enforcement stays away and allows sun-worshippers the Au Naturale experience they desire.
However, the beach is not the only place Spaniards are allowed to walk around in the buff. They can shed their clothing in any public place they desire. Spain passed a law in 1978 stating it is the inalienable right of all their citizens to strip down and parade their stuff anywhere they want to.
Efforts to change the law have repeatedly failed, so if you’re drinking Sangria in a tavern in Madrid and the urge hits to shed your constrictive clothing and dance naked on the bar, go for it. Who knows, a few other drunks in the room might follow suit and jump up there with you.
2 Want to Get High as a Kite? Portugal says, “Come on Down”
Literally, every single drug created by humankind, prescription or not, has been decriminalized in Portugal. This includes heroin, meth, and crack cocaine.
This is not to imply these drugs are legal, but if someone is caught with them in their possession they will not be handcuffed and thrown in a prison cell. They will instead see a counselor.
This seems to work in Portugal. Before the passage of the law, one in 100 citizens was addicted to heroin. Since decriminalization, deaths due to drug overdoses have dropped by 90% and cases of HIV have been dramatically reduced. Portugal has discovered that by offering help with addiction programs rather than crowding their jails, citizens who could not afford such programs in the past have turned out in record numbers to get themselves drug-free.
Perhaps the rest of the world should follow their example.
3 The Ultimate Road-Rage Weapon in South Africa
How many times has another driver cutting you off or whipping into a parking spot you were aiming for really gotten under your skin? Legally there was nothing you could do about it outside of cursing under your breath and continuing to fume for the next couple of hours.
This wouldn’t be a problem if you were in South Africa. It would be perfectly legal for you to get some sweet revenge. Simply push a button and melt the offending vehicle with the flamethrowers strapped to the side of your car. How fun would that be?
With a product called “The Blaster,” which is perfectly legal, flamethrowers capable of shooting fire 65 feet can be mounted on both sides of a car, and they won’t harm the paint when fired.
South Africa experiences roughly 13,000 carjackings per year so the government has made it legal to kill anyone caught trying to break into your car. The inventor said the apparatus probably won’t kill anyone but chances are it can cause the person being blasted to lose their eyesight, so that’s not so bad.
4 Having Trouble Shooting Your Drugs? Go to Canada and the Government Will Help You
In Vancouver, there is a government location where heroin addicts can go to shoot up. It’s strictly BYOD (bring your own drugs) and if their hands are too shaky to put the needle in straight government hired medical personnel will assist with the task. They even help them find the right vein to use. But mainly they just make sure the addict is using heroin safely so they don’t overdose.
Addicts going to this location have no fear of being arrested, but if this is a concern they can simply give a fake name and no one questions them. There are 12 injection booths stocked with sterile equipment and clean needles.
Vancouver started doing this 20 years ago because of the growing number of HIV cases from dirty needles. The program has been successful with the number of HIV cases being drastically reduced. There are some heavy heroin users who visit the facility a few times a day.
5 If You Love Your Pet Enough to Marry it, go to India
Dogs in India end walking down the aisle the most, but any animal can legally become a bride or a groom. One man in India had hanged and tortured some dogs when he was young and as he became older he got sick. Feeling the illness was karma for what he had done as a youngster, the man consulted an astrologer who informed him the only way to make peace with the universe would be to marry a dog. After receiving approval from his family they helped him pick out just the right one to be his bride. They then threw a lavish wedding with a huge feast to celebrate the union of man and dog.
A nine-year-old girl in eastern India in her efforts to ward off a bad spirit tied the knot with a stray dog. The elders of her tribe said the girl would not need to officially divorce the dog and that she was free to marry a human next time around.
This is not only legal in India. In Bali, an 18-year-old male was caught having intercourse with a cow he claimed had flirted with him. As part of a ritual, he was forced to marry the cow to cleanse the village of the unholy act of a human mating with a cow. After the wedding, the boy and his new bride were both drowned. However, the drowning of the boy was only symbolic so he was allowed to live. His newlywed Big Mac bride wasn’t so lucky.
Weird laws aren’t unusual, but this shows that some things we assume should be prohibited are taken in stride in some other places. Live and let live, as they say.