You know what I love about Pastafarians? The devoted ones stick to their beliefs no matter the circumstances.
This past August, British Columbia resident Obi Canuel wanted to renew his driver’s license with a colander on his head, as Pastafarians often do, but he was rejected:
“The truth is sometimes I have the spiritual inkling to wear the colander and I don’t think [the Insurance Corporation of B.C.] should be making decisions about what kind of religious headgear is appropriate or not,” Canuel told CTV Vancouver.
Canuel was able to wear it, however, when he got his B.C. Services card (not his license):
The reason for the rejection was extremely vague at the time, with ICBC explaining that its head cover policy was intended to “strike a balance between respect for the driver’s religious beliefs and a need to preserve the integrity of the licensing system.” But you could also argue they were making a judgment call they shouldn’t be in the position to make.
Instead of getting his license renewed, then, Canuel got a temporary license while the ICBC looked into his situation. Then he got another temporary license.
Finally, this week, the ICBC issued its decision: Canuel isn’t getting his license at all. But he’s still sticking by his beliefs:
“They told me that they weren’t going to issue another interim license,” Canuel said. “I was unhappy, but I decided that I wasn’t going to give in, and it’s better to consider your noodles carefully before dinner.”
“We will always try to accommodate customers with head coverings where their faith prohibits them from removing it. Mr. Canuel was not able to provide us with any evidence that he cannot remove his head covering for his photo,” the [ICBC] company said in a statement.
The decision to deny the Pastafarian a licence means he can no longer drive legally, but that might not be a bad thing, he says.
“I’ve been getting a lot of exercise. Noodles contain a lot of carbohydrates,” he says. “His noodliness would prefer if we not dwell on the negatives.”
I love this man. He has an impenetrable attitude that says this, too, shall pasta.
And again, before you dismiss this story, remember that the ICBC’s response here is that Canuel didn’t give them evidence that he could not remove his colander. What exactly would suffice? A letter from Prophet Bobby Henderson? A verse from the Pastafarian holy book?
They’re still being vague about which religions they take seriously and which ones they don’t — and that was precisely the distinction Canuel was trying to clarify. He won’t fight the charge anymore, but the ICBC should make their position more clear than it is right now. They shouldn’t be in the business of picking and choosing who to take seriously.
(Thanks to Richard for the link. Portions of this article were published earlier)