A devout member of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster had the cops called on him by employees at a Dayton, New Jersey, Motor Vehicle Commission facility after he demanded to be allowed to wear a pasta strainer on his head for his driver's license photo.
25-year-old Aaron Williams, a practitioner of the mostly satirical anti-creationism "religion" of Pastafarianism, says he was told that motor vehicle policy prohibited the wearing of head coverings in license photos excepting those worn for religious reasons.
"I take it as seriously as anybody else when it comes to religious beliefs," he later told NJ.com.
Speaking with GallowayPatch, Williams added: "As a Pastafarian, I believe the universe was created by a Flying Spaghetti Monster. The strainer is a showing of my devoutness to the religion."
Williams was informed that pasta strainers were not covered by the MVC's religious clothing policy, and he would need to take it up with the state.
A South Brunswick Police officer at the scene also tried to talk Williams out of his protest, and was ultimately successful.
"Had it been a turban or a head scarf, or something from a mainstream religion, then it would've been fine," Williams told Patch. "I guess since they hadn't heard of the religion, that's why they opposed it. But that's not really acceptable to me. They're not in a position to discriminate against religions that are mainstream, or not mainstream, just because they may not have heard about it."
If nothing else, at least Williams has Austria on his side.
In 2011, following a three-year-long fight, an Austrian Pastafarian was granted the right to have his driver's license photo taken with a pasta strainer after a doctor certified him "psychologically fit" to drive.
[image via Wikipedia]