An Oklahoma woman recently wore a spaghetti strainer on her head while taking a driver’s license photo, citing the state’s allowance of religious headwear.
Shawna Hammond is a Pastafarian and said the colander represents freedom, KTLA’s sister-station KFOR-TV reported Saturday.
“For me the colander represents freedom, our freedom of religion, and to whatever religion that we prefer, or even lack of religion,” Hammond said.
Pastafarianism, also known as the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, was created in 2005 and is viewed by some as a tongue-in-cheek way of questioning religion, although the official website says it is a real religion.
“A man named Bobby Henderson wrote an open letter to the Kansas State Board of Education. It was actually about teaching creationism in school and he came up with the flying spaghetti monster and it had just as much merit,” Hammond said.
Hammond said she was allowed to take the photo because she obeyed the state’s laws that requires people remove their glasses and wear a religious headpiece that does not cover their face, create shadows, or display text or logos.
“She giggled, gave me a funny look and asked me what religion I was. I told her I was a Pastafarian,” Hammond said.
Living in Oklahoma as a non-religious person is difficult and Hammond was happy she was able to express herself, she told KFOR-TV.
“It felt good to be recognized that we can all coexist and have those equal rights,” she added.
State officials later said they planned to do thorough review of the picture, and were considering changing the rules because they may be outdated.