NJ Cracks Down on Religion

In a clear violation of laws separating church and state, Pastafarian is prohibited from wearing religious items while being photographed for a driver’s license.]

The New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission banned smiles in driver's license photos last year, but apparently imposed no restriction on cooking utensils worn as religious head gear. At least, that's how an Egg Harbor Township man saw it. At about noon on Feb. 2, South Brunswick Police responded to the MVC facility on Route 130 in Dayton on reports that a man renewing his driver's license refused to remove the pasta strainer he was wearing on his head for his license photo, according to a police report. Aaron Williams, 24, of Egg Harbor Township, said the strainer is a religious head covering and he had a right to wear it for the photo. Williams said he practices Pastafarianism, which was created in 2005 in response to a hearing in the Kansas State Board of Education on evolution versus intelligent design. "What we deem as different or embarrassing is different from what another individual deems as different or embarrassing, in terms of religious practices," Williams told Patch on Tuesday.