Australia: Porn Featuring Small Breasts
Are you an adult woman in Australia with a cup breasts? According to Australia, you don't exist. Do you happen to be a man who likes to watch adult films starring small-breasted women? According to the Australian government, you secretly love child porn. If none of this makes sense to you, then you must not work for the Australian Classification Board who has banned multiple adult films from distribution because, in their opinion, the actress' smaller breasts made them appear to be under 18.
While the law doesn't outright ban porn featuring small breasts, the ABC has the right to ban all adult films that depict a woman as being under 18. While this idea sounds fine in theory, the group has actively rejected some films based solely on the breast size of the actresses involved.
China: Game Consoles
Most game consoles are made in China and Chinese prisoners are often forced to play World of Warcraft so the government can collect their loot and sell it to other players, which is why it seems so utterly bizarre that China doesn't allow the sale of gaming consoles. The ban took place back in 2000, when the government expressed its concern that the country's youth would waste their time playing games instead of working. Even so, gamers are still permitted to buy non-console games, making the ban notably ineffective –which is probably why it is not extensively enforced.
Greece: Video Games
China's not the only country to ban video games. Greece did too, although for a much different reason. In 2002, the government tried to crack down on electric gambling machines, but their legislators wrote the law so broadly that it managed to cover all forms of electronic gaming machines –meaning all video games. Amazingly, someone was even caught and arrested for violating the poorly written law by playing an MMO in an internet café. They were actually forced to serve time in prison for playing games.
Fortunately, after receiving pressure from the EU and video gamers everywhere, the law was found to be unconstitutional by the end of the year.
China: Avatar in 2D
While the army in Avatar is undoubtedly American, the idea of people siding with an indigenous population against an imperialistic force is something that China was not comfortable with. That's why shortly after the release of the movie in China, the authorities decided the movie could only be shown in 3D. Since there are very few 3D theaters in China, the move was effectively a ban on the film
Russia: Emo Clothing
Plenty of people don't like emo fashion, but while it's not that weird for a parent to tell their kids they can't wear that crap outside the house, it's entirely different when the whole government takes such a drastic stand. When the Russian government was trying to stop high suicide rates amongst teens though, they decided emo fashion were to blame.
The government went so far as to dub the style “a threat to national stability” before banning people from wearing emo clothing to public schools or government buildings. Don't worry sullen teens of Russia, you can still listen to all the forlorn emo music you want, you just can't dress like you listen to it.
China: Reincarnation Without Prior Consent
On the face of it, the idea of banning someone from reincarnating without obtaining the state's permission is preposterous and something they absolutely can't control. In reality though, the measure is their way to trying to take control of the Tibetan Buddhists (including the Dali Lama himself) by trying to rule over one of their most sacred beliefs.
Iran: “Western” Hair Cuts
Like many Middle Eastern governments, Iran hates the impending spread of decadent Western culture. In order to better protect their people from the depraved culture of Europe and North America, the government of Iran has banned all hair cuts that are not included in their list of government-approved styles. Banned styles include mullets, ponytails and spikes. Barber shops that fail to follow the law can be shut down and penalized in the years since the law took effect.
Saudi Arabia: Valentine's Day
Similarly, Saudi Arabia finds Valentine's Day to be in violation of Muslim beliefs. In order to ensure residents don't secretly send gifts to their Valentine's, the government orders all florists and gift shops to remove anything red or otherwise considered to be a symbol of romance prior to the holiday. Apparently the ban on the holiday isn't entirely successful and the country now has a thriving Valentine's Day black market where lovers can buy red roses and other tokens of romance at around six times their ordinary prices.
Denmark: Ovaltine and Marmite
In America, it's practically impossible to purchase milk that isn't fortified with vitamin D, but in Denmark, this would be completely illegal. That's because the country has put a ban on all fortified foods, effectively banning fortified breakfast cereals, Ovaltine and Marmite.
Update: According to the Denmark Embassy in England, it's not illegal to sell or possess Marmite, just to advertise it.
Denmark: Most Baby Names
Fortified snacks aren't the only thing Denmark wants to put an end to. The country also has some of the strictest child naming guidelines in the entire world. In fact, citizens of the country can only select names on a list approved by the government or they must seek permission from the government for an exception to the rule. Right now, the officially approved names list contains only around 7,000 names –about 3,000 for boys and 4,000 for girls.
After the “Jasmine Revolutions” in Tunisia, Chinese protestors were inspired to spark their own revolution. As a result, authorities cracked down not only on the rebels, but on the flower itself. The plant is now banned in the country, as are songs about the flower and text messages including the word “jasmine.”