Every state has some quirky laws. While Colorado led the marijuana legalization charge nationwide with Amendment 64 to the state constitution, that doesn’t mean residents are free to do anything they want. Here are five odd things that are now more illegal than pot in Colorado.
Selling cars on Sunday. Medical marijuana dispensaries and recreational pot shops are allowed to sell every day. Hitting Phil Long to buy a car on Sunday? Forget about it. Dealerships can have their license revoked and salespeople can face six months in jail for breaking this ban. Colorado is far from alone in restricting vehicle sales; in fact the practice is encouraged by many in the auto industry itself.
Drinking raw milk from a cow or goat you don’t own. Raw milk legalization may be a close second to marijuana in the passion it stirs from proponents. Retail sales of raw goat’s or cow’s milk is still illegal, though that hasn’t stopped so-called “cow share” programs from popping up. That’s good news for fans of the unpasteurized dairy product and artisanal cheesemakers, but once you pick up “your” cow’s milk, you can’t give it away to friends without breaking the law. The Campaign for Real Milk publishes a list where dairy rebels can get their fix.
Drinking rainwater. Colorado water laws are among the most restrictive in the West. You’re welcome to pack a bowl with your legally purchased marijuana but use captured rainwater in that bong? It’s technically a $500 fine. A 2009 law allows some landowners with wells to use rain barrels, but it’s still illegal for residents on municipal systems to do anything with natural precipitation. Change may be coming: the state is piloting rainwater usage for irrigation in new real estate developments (individuals still can’t drink it).
Soliciting for the Salvation Army. The panhandling ban in downtown Colorado Springs made it illegal for the seasonal Santa-hat-wearing bell ringers to raise money for the Salvation Army’s annual Red Kettle Campaign. The ACLU has been challenging the ordinance in court.
Setting up a lemonade stand for your kids. Few things say “America” like the summer tradition of little Johnny and Suzy selling homemade lemonade on the sidewalk. Except this very American rite of childhood violates numerous zoning, health and sales tax rules pretty much everywhere, not just in Colorado. Will looser marijuana laws lead to relaxed attitudes toward child labor? Maybe. The city of Greeley has said it will not crack down on what is elsewhere considered a gateway drink towards the harder juices such as orange and grapefruit.