Strangest Laws in Arkansas

I went through ‘The Bear State’s’ legal history and came across some really absurd ordinances. Some of them are actually real laws while others are obsolete but there are quite a few oddballs that probably never existed.

Here are eight of the quirkiest laws to exist in the State of Arkansas.

1. Never suddenly start or stop a vehicle at a McDonalds

According to Section 18-53 of the Little Rock municipal code, it is unlawful for any person while near/at the premises of a drive-in restaurant to suddenly start or stop any vehicle or to make any other loud or unseemly noise. Section 18-54 also prohibits the honking of car horns at sandwich shops after 9:00  pm.

When opening a business or LLC in Arkansas, it’s important to know the rules and regulations the state imposes on businesses. Perhaps these guides on how to start an LLC in Arkansas and how to find a great registered agent in Arkansas can help you avoid any legal issues when opening a business in the state.

2. Atheists cannot hold political office or testify as witnesses

Article 19 – Section 1 of the Arkansas Constitution prohibits any person who does not believe in God from holding any positions in any of the state’s civil departments. Atheists are also deemed not competent to testify as witnesses in a court of law.

3. You cannot name your child Zabradacka

No one can tell the origin of this weird law; our research on the inter-webs didn’t yield any useful results. It is probably an ancient obscure law or an urban legend. But then again, who in their right mind would name a child Zabradacka! What does it even mean?

4. Wife beating is allowed, but only once a month.

The authenticity of this old, obscene law has been discussed in many legal forums and law classrooms. Some argue that this legal concept dates back hundreds of years and is usually known as the “rule of thumb”, a method derived entirely from practice or experience, without any basis in scientific knowledge. 

5. It’s Arkansaw, you must say it right

According to Title 1 of  2010, the Arkansas Code, the state’s name “should be pronounced in three (3) syllables, with the final ‘s’ silent, the ‘a’ in each syllable with the Italian sound and the accent on the first and last syllables. The pronunciation with the accent on the second syllable with the sound of ‘a’ in ‘man’ and the sounding of the terminal ‘s’ is an innovation to be discouraged.”

6. Flirting between the sexes may land you a 30-day jail term

Ordinance No. 2502 of 1918 made it illegal for any person to attract the attention of any person of the opposite sex while traveling along the sidewalks, streets or public ways of the city of Little Rock, by staring at, winking at, coughing at or whistling at such person, with the intent, or in any way calculated to annoy or to attempt to flirt with any such person. This law was put forward by city officials to curb prostitution in the city.

7. It is illegal to kill “any” animal in Fayetteville

The city of Fayetteville in Arkansas has prohibited the killing, shooting, hunting, chasing, wounding or molestation of any wild animal within the city limits.

8. Keep your animals to yourself

If you are running a business establishment that deals with livestock, you should be advised that it is unlawful to keep cows, goats, horses or other hoofed animals in a pen or lot within three hundred (300) feet of any premises other than your own. Perhaps the guides on how to start an LLC and how to find a great registered agent in Arkansas can help you avoid any legal issues when opening a business in the state.

Sources:

Municode – Little Rock, Arkansas
Justia – Atheists Law
Justia – Arkansas State pronunciation
About Little Rock
Municode – Fayetteville, Arkansas
University of Arkansas

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