What’s in a name? Plenty, in some cases. None in others. We’ve all heard them – the ridiculous names some parents burden their children with, like a heavy yoke upon their shoulders. They have been around for generations. Many such burdensome names today are ethnically themed, so some will see this article as an act of prejudice, even discrimination. This could not be further from the truth. I am looking out for the future well-being of as yet unborn children, trying to protect them from the foolish choices of their parents. And besides, horrid naming decisions span racial, ethnic, socio-economic, gender and all other barriers of our diverse society. It is for this reason that I, a small government Conservative, propose a new government agency – The Legislature of Nomenclature.
It is a sad reality that such a body has become necessary. But thumb through a child’s yearbook, a company’s email database a phone book (if you can find one), or better yet, your local jail bookings, and you will see why the Legislature of Nomenclature (LON) must indeed be established.
Names such as Shacresia, Moesha, Bertha, Tonderier, Dontarius, Mathildagarde and Elquinton are placing a permanent disability upon their owner. Such names will limit future earnings, reduce marriage options, increase the likelihood of depression and in some cases incarceration, and cause permanent loss of self-esteem via the fact that nobody will know how to spell or pronounce these names. Nakeydia, LaDerrick and Wilbur will not have many friends. They will be forced into a life of crime and/or poverty. Nobody will hire them. What could motivate someone to name their child Quintasia, Shenethea or Homer?
The great societal commentators, Key and Peele have humorously captured this crisis in their “East-West Bowl” skits, and other hilarious bits. Many of the names they use are not that far off from reality.
Equally offensive are the intrinsically female names that parents sometimes regrettably assign to male children. Examples of this are Kim, June, Leslie and Carroll. One can only ask, “WHY?”
The LON would put a stop to all of these injustices. This would be governing body, run by the state and formed at the local level. Duly elected county commissioners would appoint LON members to four or six year terms. Boards would consist of seven members, and should be loosely representative of the local population …. as it stood in 1950. A state board would have oversight and could overrule or handle any appeals. The state level LON would have the final word. In order to be appointed to the Legislature of Nomenclature, a thorough background check would be conducted, including a full criminal check. Minimum educational requirement would include a Bachelors degree. Names of prospective board members, their children, grandchildren and their parents would be considered and objectionable names would disqualify a candidate.
State LON members would be appointed by a duly elected, and reasonably named, governor and would serve 10-year terms. Members could be removed by a two-thirds majority of the state legislature.
Once the LON approves a name, that name would be added to the local Naming Roster and would then be eligible for all parents to use. The LON would confer once per week and stamp all recent birth certificates with their approval, thus making the name official. The work of the LON would serve the valuable purpose of preserving – in many places restoring – the dignity of the “naming pool” – the commonly accepted list of names to choose from when giving birth to a human child. The LON would also act upon the behalf of newborn or unborn children, protecting their future safety and pride from the harsh physical and mental cruelties that would inevitably accompany a ridiculous name.
I finally side with many liberals who think more government is the answer! In this case, someone has to take a stand and introduce some regulation. I therefore nominate myself for the inaugural position on my local Legislature of Nomenclature! Do I hear a second?