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American Hero:

I've entered a few sweepstakes-type contests in the recent past, and a few of them have a statement such as "Canadian residents, in order to win, must first correctly answer a time-limited skill-testing question administered by mail." How come stupid Americans can enter sweepstakes, but stupid Canadians can't?

-- M.J., the Net

Unless you happen to be the Canadian government, it's against the law to tempt Canadians with sweepstakes-type contests. If you live in Saskatchewan and you've mailed in your entry and your name is drawn out of the hat, the correct response isn't "Yippee!", it's "I'll take State Capitals for 100, Alex." The sweepstakes' sponsor is obliged by law to ask you a question that will test your general knowledge. Luck is illegal in Canada.

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