15 Things Banned In The U.S. … But Not Any Where Else In The World
U.S. Customs is very particular about what they let in the country. Many people go on trips to other countries and buy souvenirs only to get them confiscated at customs. Before going on a trip overseas is would be wise to check for things that you cannot bring back to the states. Just because the rest of the world considers it to be legal doesn’t mean the U.S. does. Some of the things that are banned in the U.S. are for our own protection. Other times it doesn’t make since why some things are banned. Either that is the law and we must adhere to it. So next time you want to bring something back from overseas makes sure it isn’t anything on this list.
Haggis Haggis is a traditional Scottish dish that is not welcomed into the United States. The ban on Haggis came about in 1971 when the United States Department of Food and Agriculture decided there was something unpleasant about a dish made of minced organ meat from a sheep. Cows and pigs are OK, but sheep, that’s crossing the line. Outcries of Scottish Americans claiming that having no haggis for their traditional holidays is equivalent to having no turkey on Thanksgiving caused the ban to be reconsidered, but to no avail.
Rap Concerts Banned in Las Vegas Have you ever wondered why your favorite rap artist never performs in Vegas. That’s because their is a unofficial ban on rap concerts in Las Vegas. In 2005 the discreet but ever-present Vegas police informed casinos that they would be held responsible for any damages or violent crimes committed during rap concerts sponsored by their venues. Of course this angered the casinos but instead of fighting back they quietly began contacting rappers to tell them their gigs were cancelled. Other countries seem to welcome our hip-hop artist with open arms.
Kinder Eggs While the rest of the world enjoys the sweet chocolate taste of a Kinder Surprise, we cannot. America’s no-fun Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has banned the egged shaped candy on the basis that the toys inside the eggs could be a choking hazard. That makes a lot of since but we really wish could have some to help satisfy the countries sweet tooth.
Bernadette Devlin McAliskey Bernadette Devlin McAliskey is an Irish republican activist. McAliskey was banned from entering the United States in 2003. US Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) officials at O’Hare Airport seized McAliskey who was traveling on a flight from Dublin to New York on the grounds that she posed a “serious threat to national security.” An official stated that she was not allowed to enter due to an “expired visa waiver” and for fundraising for the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA).
Boating and Fishing As insane as this may sound, boating and fishing on certain waters have been illegal in America since 2006. It was established by Judge Robert G. James, in the case of Normal Parm v. Sheriff Mark Shumate, after a few Louisiana anglers were caught fishing on flooded private property. It is a law that any body of water beyond its ordinary high-water mark is considered off-limits to the public. This is a federal law and breaking it is considered a criminal offense.
Selling Books Printed Before 1985 Libraries and book stores still exist all over the world, but they are mostly empty thanks to the internet and other technology. Most people still have old books that just sit and collect dust, and they may want to sell them. Turns out they can’t sell them. There is a ban on children books printed before 1985, due to the fear that their ink might contain lead. Lead was a really big thing back in the day, when we used to put it in everything like paint, toys, and other household items. When ingested lead can cause brain damage or even death. You can go to another country and read til your hearts content or until it stops.
Collecting Rain Water In most countries collecting rain water is the only way to enjoy uncontaminated water. In the US, specifically Colorado, it is illegal to collect rain water. The law is an old Western water law from more than a century ago that is still enforced. The practice is called “water harvesting” and is one of the oldest practices of humans, but according to Colorado officials it is an undisputed case of theft. When it rains the water hits the ground, burrows deep inside it and fuels underground reservoirs or rivers, the use of which is heavily controlled by the government. So collecting rain water, is slowly cutting off the government’s source of income, which makes you a criminal.
Some Dairy Products America loves its dairy. Their are dairy farms all over the country that supply milk and cheese. Not all dairy products are welcomed in the U.S. though. Casu Marzu is a type of cheese that is banned in the U.S. The cheese is from Sardinia, Italy. The cheese is known for being riddled with live insect larvae and a stench so foul it could raise the dead. The ban on such products like unpasteurized cheese and milk is due to the health risk that comes with consuming such products, but there have only been a few select infection.
No Singing After Dark In Hawaii In countries like Japan, karaoke is a favorite past time. Loud singing can be heard in local bars and clubs throughout the night. On the island of Honolulu in Hawaii singing after dark is not allowed. As soon as the sunsets it is quiet time. Hawaii is considered one of the greatest summer holiday destinations in the world but those who like singing at night might want to consider choosing another place.
Absinthe Absinthe has been referred to as “the ultimate psychoactive and hallucinogenic drink.” That’s partly because this anise-flavored spirit has a 45–74% alcohol content, which is an astonishingly high number. The maximum alcohol content for rum, whiskey and vodka is 40%. Much of absinthe’s bad rap, however, comes from one of its ingredients: Artemisia absinthium or “grand wormwood,” which has been blamed for everything from hallucinations to muscle spasms to seizures. There are versions of Absinthe in the U.S., but the real deal contains a chemical called thujone and can be found in clubs and bars all over Europe.
Sassafras Oil Sassafras oil is still used in many countries in the making of everything from root beer to soaps and cleaning products. In the U.S., sassafras oil has been banned since 1960 because of its potential to cause cancer, induce vomiting, damage the liver and much more. Even sassafras tea was banned until 1994 when the ban was lifted.
Antiques From Certain Time Periods And Countries A lot of people like to bring back antiques from their trips abroad. It could be a figurine, musical instrument or a piece of clothing. Make sure you know exactly what it is and check with U.S. Customs and Border Protection before you bring it back. Some of these antique souvenirs you want to bring back can be considered “cultural property” and will not be allowed in the U.S. You must have a special export permit issued by the country of origin which is more or less impossible to get for a private person.
Fresh Ackee Fruit Ackee and salt-fish is one of Jamaica’s traditional dishes and one you might have some difficulty making in the US. The fresh Ackee fruit is banned in the US. Banning a fruit might seem a little extreme, but ackee seems to deserve it. The seeds of ackee contain a substance that causes something known as Jamaican Vomiting Sickness. If that’s not enough to scare you off, you should know that the consumption of ackee can also lead to seizures, coma and even death. The danger is only present when eating unripe ackee. Obviously the US government doesn’t trust you when it comes to picking ripe fruit, so it just banned the fruit completely. You can get canned ackee, which you can find in some specialty stores.
Weight Loss Products Containing Ephedra Ephedra was the darling of the weight loss world until 2004, when the FDA said “no more.” After countless complaints of everything from strokes to heart attacks to liver failure, it was found that ephedra was the culprit. It was actually quite effective as a fat burner but was banned as an ingredient in weight loss products. What would you rather be slightly overweight and alive, or skinny and dead? Ephedra can still be found in some other countries.
Buckyballs Magnet Buckyballs magnet became an instant sensation when they came out in 2009. The tiny magnetic balls were a stress reliever and just fun to play with. That’s why they were a big hit with kids. While fun, Buckyballs turned out to be quite dangerous for kids, who ended up swallowing them. This can lead to perforations of the intestine wall and stomach and in a few cases required surgery. In 2012, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a ban on selling Buckyballs magnets as children’s toys. You can find this toy under a different name in other places.