Should a practicing Pastafarian be allowed to wear a pasta strainer – a religious observation – over his head in a driver's license photo?
The answer is apparently yes, at least in Texas.
Eddie Castillo, a Texas Tech University student, successfully convinced the Texas Department of Public Safety (DMS) to allow him to wear a pasta strainer on his head for his driver's license photo claiming the accessory was a religious observation for the made-up religion, Pastafarianism.
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"Once she allowed me to I put the pasta strainer on my head, I took the biggest, cheesiest smile I probably ever took," the Texas Tech student told KLBK
The decision to allow Castillo to wear the strainer came after a monthlong battle with the DMS, from which the Texas Tech student emerged the winner, having successfully convinced the department to wear the cooking accessory.
According to Castillo, practicing Pastafarians worship the Flying Spaghetti Monster, a man-made God created as a parody to promote the teaching of intelligent design in schools, the Daily Caller notes
Castillo added that he was especially surprised he was able to get away with wearing the pasta strainer over his head in the ID considering that Lubbock County is "kind of looked at as one of the most conservative cities in the country."
"It was created as a form of satire, but it shouldn't be taken in a sense that discriminates or disassociates other religions and it should be looked at as a political symbol for the separation of church and state," the 22-year-old Castillo added.
Castillo isn't the first U.S. citizen to attempt such a gesture; however, he is the first to succeed, notes KLBK.
The progressive undergraduate said he hoped the message "opens the doors for new age religion," adding "it kind of symbolizes acceptance and it kind of celebrates in a sense that we are a melting pot of a country."
The Texas Tech student added that since the incident, he has received a great deal of support for the photo, especially from the secular community, KLBK reported.
Castillo claimed the act was intended to be more about religious freedom than being anti-religion, KLBK noted.
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