An Arizona man has won the right to express his religion on his driver’s license photo after he said it would be discriminatory had he not been allowed to wear a colander on his head for the picture.
Sean Corbett, 36, of Chandler, is a Pastafarian, a follower of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
He told InsideEdition.com that in addition to eating pasta every day and speaking like a pirate, Corbett follows the tenements by wearing a spaghetti colander on his head, which is considered by the church as a form of religious headwear.
But, the Arizona Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) appeared to disagree when he attempted to get the colander in his driver’s license photo years ago. Corbett claimed he was ridiculed and treated poorly because of his request.
“It was just a terrible experience,” he said. “I eventually gave in and just took one of my face.”
Earlier this year, he said his ID went through some wear and tear so he returned to the MVD for a new card, this time insisting they allow him to wear the spaghetti colander in the photo.
“They still gave me pushback," Corbett said. "They said it wasn’t going to happen and they weren’t going to take my picture with my spaghetti colander.
"They didn’t have the right to that — that would be discrimination. As long as it doesn’t obstruct my face, you have to allow it.”
After nearly an hour, a manager finally agreed to allow him to take a photograph for a temporary ID, but they couldn’t guarantee it would get the final approval from the state for the permanent card.
Sure enough, Corbett received his approved ID with the photo earlier this week.
“It was just a matter of principle,” he said. “If people think I’m being ridiculous or I went too far with it, then they have the right to say that. It doesn’t upset me."
However, state officials will soon void his ID, saying that facial recognition software should have weeded out the photo, according to KPHO.
“If that does happen, I believe I do have legal ground to stand on for a discrimination case if it does need to go that far,” Chandler said. “I don’t want people to go through the same experience I went through.”