Law
1.1k voters

Weird Laws in Texas

Updated August 6, 2020 5.9k votes 1.1k voters 41.7k views30 items

List of strange state laws on the books in Texas. These rules and regulations were passed by the Texas state legislature, or in an individual in Texas city, and for one reason or another, were never overturned, remaining active on the books until this day. Almost every city and state has some outdated, old-fashioned or even modern, but nonsensical, laws on the books, and they come about for a variety of reasons. Most frequently, these laws appeared in the books following a court ruling on a specific case, that then set a common law precedent from that point on.

Strange or unnecessary laws have become a popular source for humor, online and more generally in popular culture. TV shows like "The Simpsons" have had a lot of fun with the notion of small towns having peculiar regulations on the books. (In one episode, Mayor Quimby is surprised to find out the town charter mandates that all ducks wear long pants.)

Often, "dumb laws" as reported on websites and in humor books have been shown to be inaccurate. This sometimes happens because a real, sensible law has been exaggerated or misunderstood, turning into something that sounds silly or ridiculous. Other times, it is simply the result of a hoax being repeated enough times to gain some kind of credibility. If you think any of the laws on this page are not accurate or do not remain active in Texas, let us know in the comments.
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  • 1
    354
    123

    24 hour notice

    Criminals must give their victims 24 hours notice, orally or in writing, to explain the nature of the crime to be committed.
  • 2
    276
    104

    Shooting a buffalo

    It is illegal for one to shoot a buffalo from the second story of a hotel.
  • 3
    225
    92

    Horse in the saloon

    You can ride your horse in the saloon. (Temple)
  • 4
    181
    72

    Selling one's eye

    It is illegal to sell one's eye.
  • 5
    239
    113

    Obnoxious odors

    Obnoxious odors may not be emitted while in an elevator. (Port Arthur)
  • 6
    167
    70

    Milking cows

    It is illegal to milk another person’s cow.
  • 7
    160
    66

    Wire cutters

    Wire cutters can not be carried in your pocket. (Austin)
  • 8
    171
    79

    Landing an airplane

    Landing an airplane on the beach is illegal. (Galveston)
  • 9
    161
    92

    Getting drunk

    One needs permission from the director of parks and recreation before getting drunk in any city park. (Galveston)
  • 10
    149
    85

    Riding horse without lights

    Owners of horses may not ride them at night without tail lights. (Texarkana)
  • 11
    149
    88

    Sipping of beer

    It is illegal to take more than three sips of beer at a time while standing.
  • 12
    121
    73

    Owning sex toys

    Up to a felony charge can be levied for promoting the use of, or owning more than six dildos.
  • 13
    118
    71

    Acknowledge a supreme being

    One must acknowledge a supreme being before being able to hold public office.
  • 14
    115
    72

    Beer

    Beer may not be purchased after midnight on a Sunday, but it may be purchased on Monday. (Houston)
  • 15
    74
    40

    Inhaling fumes

    No person shall inhale fumes from model glue. (Galveston)
  • 16
    128
    103

    Realistic sex toys

    It’s illegal to possess realistic dildos. (Dallas)
  • 17
    74
    57

    Dusting a building

    It is illegal to dust any public building with a feather duster. (Clarendon)
  • 18
    81
    64

    Offensive gestures

    Offensive gestures will not be tolerated at any special event. (Galveston)
  • 19
    72
    59

    Encyclopedia Britannica

    The entire Encyclopedia Britannica is banned in Texas because it contains a formula for making beer at home.
  • 20
    90
    80

    Unusual haircuts

    It is illegal for children to have unusual haircuts. (Mesquite)
  • 21
    87
    79

    Flirting using the eyes and hands

    It is illegal for both sexes to flirt or respond to flirtation using the eyes and/or hands. (San Antonio)
  • 22
    83
    77

    Dogs on leash

    Dogs must be on a leash at ALL times. (Jasper)
  • 23
    68
    86

    Sitting on the sidewalk

    Any person who sits on a sidewalk may be fined up to $500. (Galveston)
  • 24
    51
    68

    Limburger cheese

    It is illegal to sell Limburger cheese on Sunday. (Houston)
  • 25
    43
    63

    Throwing confetti

    It is against the law to throw confetti, rubber balls, feather dusters, whips or quirts (riding crops), and explosive firecrackers of any kind. (Borger)