Should ICBC let this Pastafarian wear a colander on his driver’s licence?

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In this video, Surrey resident Obi Canuel documents his fight with ICBC for the right to wear a pasta strainer on his head in his driver's licence photo.

You see, Canuel is an ordained minister of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster—a Pastafarian—and he told CTV Vancouver he should be allowed to do so on religious grounds.

Funnily enough, a photo of him wearing the colander was okayed for his B.C. services card.

"The truth is sometimes I have the spiritual inkling to wear the colander and I don’t think ICBC should be making decisions about what kind of religious headgear is appropriate or not," Canuel told CTV.

Formed as a satirical protest against the teaching of creationism and "intelligent design" in U.S. schools, the church says that a drunk Flying Spaghetti Monster created the universe.

Regarding driver licensing, the ICBC website states:

ICBC affirms your rights to religious expression. You will not be asked to remove any headgear that does not interfere with facial recognition technology as long as it is worn in conjunction with religious practice, or is needed as a result of medical treatment.

So what do you think? Should ICBC treat Canuel's colander the same way it treats turbans and hijabs?

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20 Comments

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UB

Aug 14, 2014 at 11:55am

As much as I sympathize with the practical joke, he should be fined for waiting tax payer money.

Herr Schwarz

Aug 14, 2014 at 11:55am

Our personal religious freedoms are at stake in our so-called democratic and free land. He boiled for our sins, Sauce be Upon Him. Forgive them , FSM, for they know not what they do!

G

Aug 14, 2014 at 12:18pm

UB, his religion is no more a practical joke that any other religion that worships an imaginary deity.

Wanda Halpert

Aug 14, 2014 at 12:45pm

This persons claims are as rational as any other religious organization and he has rights, as do Sikhs, Jews and Muslims, to any head covering he chooses. Equality is the law of the land. If we allow people to wrap cloth around their heads and wear an RCMP uniform, we must also allow him the same rights or the law is biased and being applied unequally.

Bryan

Aug 14, 2014 at 2:05pm

I'm assuming then that he wears the colander at all times, such as at work, while shopping etc. If he only wants to wear it for the photo, then it would appear that Mr Canuel is only doing this strictly for the publicity, and not for any supposed 'religious claim'.

Jonathan

Aug 14, 2014 at 2:19pm

I think ICBC is in the right here; you do not have an unlimited right to wear whatever headgear you want when you get your photo taken. The default amount ALL religions is that you remove your headwear unless you have a serious religious devotion or obligation to do otherwise.

A colander is not, by any agreed upon standard of Pastafarians considered a religious obligation or even an object of devotion. It's basically one fellow deciding this type of hat would be amusing for him as a religious statement.

In other words, this is basically as valid as a Catholic or Muslim deciding they would like to wear a cassock or robe on their head as a religious devotion. It's not a reasonable accommodation and ICBC is right for not accepting his argument.

Cre

Aug 14, 2014 at 2:21pm

FSM will bless Mr. Canuel with a touch of his noodly appendage.

21 6 Rating: +15

James Blatchford

Aug 14, 2014 at 3:06pm

I
Can't
Be
ColanderMan?!?

11 6 Rating: +5

Marc

Aug 14, 2014 at 4:23pm

Then there shouldn't be any special exemptions for anyone that claims a religious belief. It's an all or none kind of game and while I agree it's costing us tax payers, I don't agree that it's a waste. It's a point that has to be continually made until we (as a society) either remove special exemptions entirely (one law to rule us all) or we "allow" anyone to claim the exemption for any "religion" (or for no religion).
Basically, I think there shouldn't be separate rules (or special exemptions) for anyone. We should all be treated exactly the same before the law/government regardless of what beliefs we have or we lack.
That includes being allowed to wear "headgear" if other people are allowed to do so, whether I have a religious reason or not.

32 7 Rating: +25

Steven

Aug 14, 2014 at 6:00pm

Why? Why would they ridicule his deep religious devotion for the sake of a silly photo? His face is clearly visible. This is unconscionable. First they came for the Pastafarians, and we did nothing...

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