Commended, Canadian Children's Book Centre, Our Choice, 2000
You Can't Do That in Canada
By Bev Spencer Illustrated by Steve Attoe
Scholastic Canada Ltd | ISBN 9781443102520 Paperback 128 Pages | 5.25" x 7.75" | Ages 8 to 11
Think Canadians are the logical, rational bunch? The kind who don't overreact? Well, open this book and find out just how weird and wacky some of our laws have been - and remember, it's kooky enough that the laws were created, but stranger still to think that certain behaviour actually led to their creation!
Here are just a few:
An old BC law supposedly made it illegal to kill a sasquatch.
You can be imprisoned for challenging someone to a duel, or even accepting the challenge.
You can get two years in prison for pretending to practise witchcraft (there was a case as recently as 1984!).
There is a two-year penalty for offending a public place with a bad smell.
In Fredericton, NB, it is against the law to wear a snake.
Canada has its share of "Rip Van Winkle" statutes that are still on the books. You Can't Do That in Canada! highlights the wackiest, with thirty-five accompanying cartoons. A section at the end includes a quiz about really strange laws, and kids guess which three are the fakes. The rest, bizarre as they seem, are - or were - really on the books.