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Home | News | Candidates, ‘Supreme Beings’ and the Odd Laws of Texas
Photo courtesy State of Texas

Candidates, ‘Supreme Beings’ and the Odd Laws of Texas

“Mr Cottingham,” began the e-mail I received from Rebekah G…

“I love your work. I love how you can dig into the truth of things then give it to us without some MSM slant. That’s why I come at you with this question.

Four people for the same office: Escobar, Mendoza, Williams, Seeberger. Which supreme being do they subscribe to and has such public declaration been made for belief? This is law in Texas!

One must acknowledge a supreme being before being able to hold office.

What being do each believe in?”

This e-mail arrived when I was latterly sitting at my doctor’s office. It made me laugh. I needed that laugh. Then, waiting for what seemed an eternity to see the doctor, I decided to Google this law see if it existed.

It does! It’s in the Texas Constitution!

Article one, section four of the Texas Constitution states: “No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office, or public trust, in this State; nor shall any one be excluded from holding office on account of his religious sentiments, provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being.”

This article of the Constitution does not define “Supreme Being,” so I guess that could be anything from God to the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

Gears began to turn, and smoke began to pour out of my ears as I began to wonder what other crazy and odd laws are on the book here in Texas. I jumped down a dark hole of strange laws courtesy of Google.

The first thing I came up with was the Texas Weather Modification Act of 1967.

The Weather Modification Act had the Texas Water Development Board license and issue permits for weather modification in the state and promote research and development of technology that would change the weather. Eventually, this act was codified as part of the Texas Water Code.

Under this act one can apply for grants to modify weather. I imagine this was for things like seeding clouds so that it could rain. If it’s still on the books, well, someone should apply!

Two laws that I can’t seem to find the citations for concern cows and garbage.

No matter how hungry you are, you simply cannot eat another person’s garbage. If you eat your neighbor’s garbage, without permission, you can be charged with trespassing and theft of another’s property.

If you are thirsty or want to help a neighbor out down the road, don’t milk his cow!  The older law, if you milked another person’s cow was a $10 fine. Today, however, if you milk a cow that is not yours, you will be charged for theft.

Another odd law that I found concerns cussing around a corpse.

Now, I used to work at Mt. Carmel Cemetery, and a long of things can go wrong when trying to get someone into the ground. Oh, and is there a lot of cussing – employees, visitors, family. For this, you get fined it seems.

I’ll leave you with one law that should have been passed! This one is from 1973.

HB 110 which James, “Jim” Kaster, a Democrat out of El Paso, tried to get on the books could be considered an anti-crime bill, of sorts.

HB 110 reads, “Making it a crime to commit a crime of violence against the person or property of another without having first notified the victim of his intent to commit the crime and of the victim’s rights; providing penalties; amending Title 19, Penal Code of Texas, 1925, as amended, by adding Chapter 20; and declaring an emergency.”

What are some odd laws that you know? I would love for you to share them with me. Send them to me at

About Steve Zimmerman

Steve is a writer, photographer, and poet. In addition to his freelance work for the El Paso Herald-Post, he is a videographer, and is launching a weekly podcast based on his forthcoming book, “Leap of Fatih” which will be released in 2019 from HarperCollins. Through his company, Still Going Somewhere, he is producing a series of micro-documentaries with individuals who have survived the Holocaust. You can contact Steven at 915-201-0918, or by email at To learn more about Steven, visit his webpage at

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One comment

  1. This is just too funny!

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