Wisconsin DMV says Colanders are ok

Published February 11th, 2016 by Bobby Henderson


Good news: the Wisconsin Department of Transportation says Pastafarians are allowed to wear Colanders in their license photos (despite some having been denied in their earlier attempts).

Attorney Derek Allen deserves the credit — he wrote an impressive letter laying out in detail why DMV rules allow for religious headwear.

Here is Mr. Allen’s letter to the Wisconsin DMV, and their response — they are worth a read.

Thanks Mr. Allen, you are doing great work.



48 Responses to “Wisconsin DMV says Colanders are ok”

  1. Dread Pyrate Higgs says:


    I went in today to get my license renewed in my small town home in BC Canada. I was accused of wasting the agent’s time, that ICBC had ruled on it and that photos were not even to be taken with a holy headdress, let alone having the photo and supporting documentation sent up the chain to administration.

    Naturally, as a devout Pastafarian and formidable pyrate, my instinct was to flog the offending agent with noodles cooked “el dente”. However, noting that the employees had eaten lunch and would be unarmed for a food fight, I objected and then left boiling mad.

    Thankfully, I was able to come here for moral support and ammunition. Any fellow Pastanadians meeting with similar resistance?

    • Keith says:

      I was hoping to join a crew commanded by someone with the prefix “Dread Pyrate” but Roberts has apparently retired and I live far from Canada. This is a pity, as I have experience with muzzle loading cannons and muskets. I am also a reasonable fencer, although my father was not killed by a six fingered man.

  2. Rasputin says:

    Dear Dread Pyrate, what a bunch of c**ksuckers (but not in a good way).
    All ALL head dresses prohibited, including Islamic, Sikh, Jewish and Native Canadian? If so, that’s OK. Equality under the law is all we seek.

  3. Saint Gnocchi says:

    Dear irate, Dread Pyrate Higgs,
    Your behaviour – as described in paragraph two, was exemplary. On behalf of all Pastas, thank you. Whether our weapons be al dente or even only slightly overcooked, our beloved FSM does not condone noodle violence. SillyBugger-type Pastafarians just harm our cause.

    I think you’re a bloody fine chap. Even though the skirmish didn’t go as planned, you kept all your noodles about you. Ramen.

    • Rasputin says:

      “Dread Pyrate” is one of the best names on this site for a LONG time.

      • Dread Fred Phelps says:

        What about my name? I pillaged money, souls and even respect. Pirates?

        • The Sauceror says:

          Dear Dread Dead Fred, you have a nice name, too. But, still, nobody likes you. Your mama doesn’t like you. Your dog doesn’t like you– nobody likes you. Even you don’t like you— and you’re dead.

        • The Sauceror says:

          Well, ok, maybe your dog can like you a little bit, but definitely not your mama. You KNOW what you did to her.

        • Rasputin says:

          “Dread Rasputin” sounds better.

  4. Dread Pyrate Higgs says:


    Thanks for the feedback. I have written ICBC (Insurance Corporation of British Columbia – a Crown Corporation) and asked what thair protocol is for handling requests for wearing of religious headdress and am awaiting a response. Last year, a fellow Pastafarian, Obi Canuel, had attempted to wear his Holy Colander for his Driver’s License photo and was refused after a short to and fro (no cutlasses were unsheathed). However, the Vancouver Sun did an investigation and found some interesting inconsistencies on the application of thair policies around the freedom of religious expression.

    On ICBC’s website is the following:

    “ICBC affirms your rights to religious expression. You will not be asked to remove any head covering that does not interfere with facial recognition technology as long as it is worn in conjunction with religious practice, or for hair loss due to medical treatments. This includes but is not limited to hats, bandanas, head bands, scarves, helmets or other hair accessories that act as a head covering.”

    “Customers who have thair image captured in circumstances where ICBC does not have information that the head covering is worn regularly in public as part of thair religious beliefs or due to medical treatment will be sent a letter asking them to return to the office to have thair image captured again without any head covering.”

    The second paragraph seems to allow for the subjective application of its policy…a wee bit unfair.

    It’s now afternoon and no email has arrived so I will call ICBC to see if I can get an answer.

    I will keep you posted…may your timbers be shivered

    • Captain Birdseye says:

      Dread Pyrate, guessing that you only see the Sun for four hours each day, I suspect you could wear a knitted colander unnoticed for long periods. Arrange for dated casual photos. For formal photographs, obviously, one wears the formal version of the headdress, as do Sikhs, Jews and Muslims.

  5. Rasputin says:

    Briliant, Dread Pyrate! You’re going about it in exactly the right way.
    If we get a ship, Higgs will have to be our bosun.

    • Keith says:

      Don’t forget the pentium parrot.

    • REV G. says:

      Higgs Boson! Arrrrgh,indeed! Whoever heard of a Higgs Boatswain-

  6. george kirkpatrick says:

    Hey. Fellow pastafarians.’
    Tho, my spell check disapproves. I want to share my California driver’s license application story.
    Just yesterday I went in for the photo two dayz before my 73 rd birthday. A renewal
    Oh, they at first they refused my colander headdress. Then I showed my paperwork and a ACLU membership card. a member for 15 years. Then a miracle happened. They called Sacramento , and I guess they didn’t want trouble. I did mention going to court.
    And voila , they folded. I got my picture taken.
    I’m waiting for the results. I think it worked. they said it would .
    So, fellow pasta heads. If they tell you Pastafarianism is not a religion. do as I did and tell them it is NOT up to the state to
    decide what is a religion or not. Separation of state / religion prevails.
    and Good Luck ! .Don’t let some petty tyrant pull the wool over your eyes. Show them who’s the public servant.

  7. Rasputin says:

    Dear George K., BRILLIANT !!! Petty tyrants are afraid of being out-tyranted by other petty tyrants.

  8. tbsbet says:

    We’re adding some great features to help developers looking for a Mandrill alternative. Spoiler: subaccounts are here.

    • Keith says:

      I’m so happy to hear about your Man Drill alternative. Will you be appearing in the next Sydney G&L Mardi Gras?

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