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Recently I was reading an article about laws in various countries that were considered ludicrous. It seemed that many countries have their share of laws that are comical or ridiculous – Russia proved to be no exception. What follows are a few of these laws. Hope you enjoy:-)
In the city of Chelyabinsk, it is against the law to drive a dirty car. With a population of over one million people, you can bet that there are going to be some dirty cars. The fine for driving a dirty car was reported to be about 2,000 rubles – this was equivalent to about $62 at one time. This law also went into effect in Moscow. Basically, this law provides the police with an excuse to pull you over should they need “lunch money.” Both of these cities could be a great place to open up a car wash.
Bloggers are not allowed to use profanity. Profanity also cannot be used in theater or film. The “arts’ have now been protected from profanity by a law that President Putin made official last year. The Battleship Potemkin is one of the only Russian movies that I can remember seeing that might not have any profanity in it. Though this law may have the good intentions of “protecting” traditional Russian values, it may make people feel as though their freedom of expression has been reduced.
A law was passed in 2011 by Dmitri Medvedev that officially acknowledged beer as an alcoholic beverage; much to the chagrin of those that thought otherwise. What this effectively did was to limit where beer could be sold. Perhaps this is why President Putin decided to get back into the game. Does this mean that if you do not consider beer to be an alcoholic beverage, you are breaking the law?
When Russia was known as the U.S.S.R., distributing Beatles albums was illegal. Guess the politburo never heard Back In The U.S.S.R. or they just didn’t like it. To be fair, most imports from the West were against the law. Who needs music from the West when you’ve got a balalaika?
As I mentioned earlier, Russia is not alone with its silly laws. In Germany its illegal to run out of gas on the autobahn. In Milan, its illegal to frown in public and in Venice its against the law to feed the birds. Chewing gum is illegal in Singapore and so is wearing heals in Greece. As we can see, things we do harmlessly in one country could land us in trouble in another. In all countries, I would dare say that ignorance is no excuse for breaking the law, so arm yourself with knowledge in order to save yourself money and grief.