International law

The draconian laws of Singapore and the government's hard-handed approach toward enforcing them are credited with cleaning up a formerly corrupt and crime-ridden nation. The citizens of Singapore now enjoy a crime-free environment, but at what cost? Some of the laws in Singapore appear extreme to the average Westerner. Take a look at the following two laws, and let us know if you think they are reasonable in the comments below.

Probably the most interesting thing about Singapore's crazy laws -- compared to other countries -- is that these laws are not merely the unenforced legal remnants of the past. No, these insane laws are actually enforced with equally bizarre and extreme punishments, like being beaten with a cane.

If You Gotta Pee, Don't Do It In the Elevator

No one will argue with a law that says you are not allowed to urinate in a public elevator, but in Singapore, the extreme way they capture offenders is rather comical. Many elevators in the country have urine detectors that can sense the odor of urine. If you decide to relieve yourself in the elevator, an alarm will sound, the doors will automatically close and you will be trapped inside until the police arrive to arrest you.

This begs the question, does Singapore have special incarceration facilities full of pee offenders? When a murderer or mob boss asks, "What are you in for?" at the slammer, and you start rambling about the time you micturated on the elevator ride to your penthouse suite on the 98th floor, will you get any street cred at all? If you go to jail for urinating in the elevator, hopefully your cellmate will be a bubblegum offender.

Bubble Gum Is a Controlled Substance

Tired of seeing those ugly black spots from discarded chewing gum all over the sidewalks? Singapore is, too, and they solved that problem by turning Wrigley's into a controlled substance. Chewing gum isn't allowed to be sold in the country, but you can still sneak a few slices into your carry-on bag. Still, if you spit it out on the ground, though, you'll get slapped with a hefty fine.

Interestingly, Wrigley lobbyists in Singapore succeeded in establishing a loophole in the bubblegum ban. If you get a special doctor's note, you can still buy and masticate medicinal gums to your heart's content. This a little bit like medical marijuana in California. How many bubble gum buyers in Singapore are really chewing it for their health?

What Do You Think of These Laws

On a certain level, these laws might make sense to some Americans, but aren't the punishments a little bit extreme? What do you think? Post your comments below!