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August 12th, 2013
01:30 PM ET

Judge: Baby can't be named 'Messiah'

A Tennessee judge has ordered the parents of a 7-month-old boy to rename their son "Martin" instead of "Messiah," CNN affiliate WBIR reports.

"The word Messiah is a title and it's a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ," Child Support Magistrate Lu Ann Ballew said.

Jaleesa Martin, the child's mother, told WBIR that she intends to appeal the decision.

Do you agree with the judge's decision or do you think the parents should be able to name their son Messiah? Let us know in the comments below.

Read the full story at WBIR
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Christianity • Church and state • Courts • Tennessee

soundoff (1,648 Responses)
  1. Vic

    It is not a legal issue, it is an ecclesiastical issue!

    August 13, 2013 at 10:03 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      In what way is a judge forcing a parent to change their child's name not a legal issue?

      August 13, 2013 at 10:07 am |
      • Vic

        I don't know the legal technicality of it but it seems like the judge is employing a "discretionary ruling" of some sort.

        August 13, 2013 at 10:14 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Sounds (or perhaps smells) like horse-sh!t to me. Anyway, a discretionary decision is still legal. In what way does this pertain to any church?

          August 13, 2013 at 10:16 am |
        • Akira

          You were told yesterday that any discretionary ruling has to still follow the Constitution. She didn't. End of story.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:17 am |
        • skytag

          You are soooo dumb. I mean, you have to be really, really dumb to not see what's wrong with a magistrate imposing her personal religious beliefs on a citizen of this country. It's a clear violation of church and state.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:18 am |
        • tallulah13

          Vic, you must really hate the United States if you are so cavalier about flagrant violations of our Constitution.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:21 am |
        • Vic

          I love the United States of America more than you can possibly imagine, and I am not afraid to exploit my mind to contribute for the benefit of all.

          Cheers.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:28 am |
        • Akira

          How is spreading misinformation beneficial to anyone? You seriously think restricting the Constitution benficial? I'm glad I don't live in your little world.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:36 am |
        • skytag

          @Vic: "I love the United States of America more than you can possibly imagine"

          Not likely. The American you love is one where Christian zealots can control people's personal choices.

          "and I am not afraid to exploit my mind to contribute for the benefit of all."

          I've read a lot of your comments, Vic. There isn't really much there to exploit. It's pretty much the mind of a religious simpleton who quotes Bible verses as if he's casting spells on his readers. What's your educational background, Vic?

          August 13, 2013 at 10:54 am |
        • Pole dancing for Jesus

          "I love the United States of America more than you can possibly imagine, and I am not afraid to exploit my mind to contribute for the benefit of all."

          Let us know when you start to use your mind.

          August 13, 2013 at 11:01 am |
        • Athy

          Do you think Vic sounds educated?

          August 13, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
    • tallulah13

      This is only a legal matter in that the judge's decision is clearly a violation of the law. Ecclesiastical issues have no legal standing, and only matter to those who think that incantations and rules will allow them to bargain with supernatural beings.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:14 am |
      • Vic

        The Law employs discretion to formulate ordinances pertinent to community relations.

        August 13, 2013 at 10:21 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Yes, and this case was a blatant abuse of that discretion.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:25 am |
        • Akira

          No matter what words you random emphasize, the ruling still has to follow the Constitution. This doesn't. It will be overturned.
          Arbitrarily ignoring the Constitution is a hallmark of a person that has no business sitting in judgment of anybody, even if you agree with the decision, based on religious grounds, which violates the separation of church and state.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:27 am |
        • tallulah13

          The Constitution is the ultimate arbiter of legality in this country, and this ruling was in flagrant violation. Your god has no legal standing in the laws of this nation. If you wish to live in a theocracy, feel free to leave.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:27 am |
        • Akira

          "The Law employs discretion to formulate ordinances pertinent to
          community relations."

          This isn't about putting up a fence, Vic. Naming your child isn't an ordinance. This woman oversteeped her authority.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:32 am |
        • skytag

          People with brains understand there are very clear limits to that discretion, and that his judge exceeded those limits. What's your educational background, Vic? I'm guessing it isn't government or law.

          August 13, 2013 at 11:08 am |
        • Vic

          No, it's not governmental or law!

          Well, this is an anonymous medium, and I like to remain incognito, if you well. To put it to rest, my educational background is in Digital Electronics.

          August 13, 2013 at 11:19 am |
        • Ken

          Vic
          Ordinances have to be established beforehand in order to legally binding. Assuming that there isn't a law on the books already forbidding the naming of a child "Messiah", I really can't see what legal right the judge had to rule this way.

          August 13, 2013 at 12:04 pm |
        • Ken

          Judge had no legal grounds to change the baby's first name according to this news video.

          http://www.wbir.com/video/2600845202001/1/Legality-of-ordering-mother-to-change-name-from-Messiah

          August 13, 2013 at 12:28 pm |
        • skytag

          @Vic: "Well, this is an anonymous medium, and I like to remain incognito, if you well."

          You like to post a lot of non sequiturs. Why did you waste time typing this? Unless you do reveal something pretty unique about yourself your anonymity is pretty safe given that there are over 100 million adults in this country and you could be any of them.

          August 13, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      "it is an ecclesiastical issue" And there lies the problem, a total disregard for our freedom because of some made-up nonsense. Go away.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:26 am |
    • Prize for Most Stupid Post

      Congratulations, Vic. You win the prize for making the most stupid post of the day.

      Sheesh. You're a stupid one.

      August 13, 2013 at 11:15 am |
      • Akira

        And he will proceed to post this repeatedly, on future pages. Again.

        As is his right. Vic has the right to be wrong.

        August 13, 2013 at 11:50 am |
    • Ken

      Vic
      Any ecclesiastical issue would be between the parent and their church, correct? Her pastor could refuse to baptize the child under that name, I suppose, but she would still be free to switch churches and have her way there.

      August 13, 2013 at 12:07 pm |
  2. Brody in RI

    "Do you agree with the judge's decision or do you think the parents should be able to name their son Messiah? Let us know in the comments below."

    –Yes we do.
    –You don't name your kids God, Satan just as you would not name your kid President of the United States, Doctor or Scientist.

    August 13, 2013 at 8:59 am |
    • Cole

      'Yes we do' for what?

      August 13, 2013 at 9:00 am |
    • Brody in RI

      Agree with the judge's decision.

      August 13, 2013 at 9:05 am |
    • A cute moniker

      Parents should be naming their babies and not giving out t/tles or making statements.

      Be wise with the moniker you give your child, it has to carry that moniker for the rest of its life.

      If these parents can't make a choice with a name for their baby how are these parents going to make other choices that are pertinent to their life

      August 13, 2013 at 9:13 am |
      • Saraswati

        I agree this particular name was unlikely to offer the kid advantages, but it wasn't the judges decision. Half of all names would be axed that way.

        August 13, 2013 at 9:31 am |
    • Saraswati

      People are named after gods all the time, from Frieda to Athena to Shiva, or use references, such as Jesus. Careers are also used. Do you object to Chandler? Carter?

      August 13, 2013 at 9:30 am |
    • Ashton is my middle name

      The judge made a valid point,parents are to give their babies a 'name' and should not be conferring 'titles'.
      That distinction should be clear and the judge pointed out the difference very clearly.

      August 13, 2013 at 9:39 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        Messiah was a t.itle 2,000 years ago. Now it's just another element of Bronze Age mythology.

        August 13, 2013 at 9:53 am |
      • Saraswati

        The fastest growing name right now is "Major"; "King" is in the top 10. As I pointed out elsewhere, a huge proportion of English names refer to job ti tles and historically always have (Cooper, Taylor, Deacon...). Do you really think the name "Messiah" is going to confuse people?

        August 13, 2013 at 9:55 am |
      • skytag

        More evidence religion makes people both arrogant and stupid. It's not the government's place to tell people what they can and can't name their kids.

        August 13, 2013 at 9:59 am |
      • TheVocalAtheist

        A judge has no place telling anyone what they should name their children. What a deluded loser and sense of importance, take her off the bench now.

        August 13, 2013 at 10:31 am |
      • Akira

        The judge could state her opinion, "I don't like that name, but it's your choice", and attend to the matters she was put on the bench for; to uphold the law, not make up her own.
        She is way out of line, and should be recalled.

        August 13, 2013 at 11:01 am |
      • ME II

        Bishop is used as a name isn't it?

        August 13, 2013 at 11:06 am |
        • Akira

          I know a woman whose name is Queen; we call her Queenie. We have never mistaken her for any sitting monarch.

          August 13, 2013 at 11:18 am |
    • skytag

      "You don't name your kids"

      You don't get to decide this. The judge was wrong, even if you agree with her. It's not our fault if you're too full of yourself to see that.

      August 13, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      Satan is a nice name. Or Lucy for a girl, short for Lucifer. Lucifer was the bearer of light, the 'Morning Star' who fought against the despotic regime of Yahweh. A child should be proud to bear that name.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:03 am |
    • First, Middle and Last Name

      First Name: President
      Middle Name: Of
      Last Name: United States

      August 13, 2013 at 10:06 am |
      • Hakuna Matata

        Agree with the Judge, certain names should be kept out of bounds, just like naming a kid 'President of United States' should be kept out of bounds.

        August 13, 2013 at 11:01 am |
        • Akira

          Can't tell people what to name their kids. Period.

          August 13, 2013 at 11:26 am |
    • Helena

      I do agree with the Judges Decision.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:10 am |
      • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

        Well you clearly have no consideration for individual liberty. I suggest emigrating to a theocracy.

        August 13, 2013 at 10:11 am |
      • skytag

        This from someone so dumb she writes "Judges Decision" instead of "judge's decision." You know, in some Islamic countries people like you agree with judges' decisions to imprison women for being raped.

        August 13, 2013 at 10:22 am |
      • Doc Vestibule

        Is Helena your real name?
        If so, do you realize that you're named for an ancient Greek goddess?

        August 13, 2013 at 10:34 am |
      • TheVocalAtheist

        And I would bet my last dollar that you are:

        A. Republican
        B. Christian
        C. Delusional

        August 13, 2013 at 10:34 am |
        • skytag

          "Delusional" is kind of redundant since you already listed "Christian." I'd go with:

          C. Dumb.

          August 13, 2013 at 1:54 pm |
    • tallulah13

      Neither your opinion nor your belief has any bearing on the law. It is clearly unconstitutional for a judge to make a legal decision based on her particular religion. She is wrong, and should lose her position for this abuse of power.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:17 am |
      • TheVocalAtheist

        Just envision the judge wearing the crazy garb the pope and his cronies wear, the robe she wears is just a camouflage. She needs to take off the robe and go away.

        August 13, 2013 at 10:39 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          From my experience, most Southern Christians aren't too keen on the RCC.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:42 am |
        • TheVocalAtheist

          "From my experience, most Southern Christians aren't too keen on the RCC." Yes, of course, I was attempting an analogy between robes and religious power.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:53 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Ah yes, robes and funny hats are generally the order of the day for high-ranking religious officials.

          August 13, 2013 at 10:57 am |
    • skytag

      Who are these "we" of whom you speak, the Christian Taliban? Republicans?

      August 13, 2013 at 10:28 am |
  3. Doc Vestibule

    Would the judge approve the name "Madonna"? Or is that one reserved for Christ's mother?

    August 13, 2013 at 8:40 am |
    • Akira

      Good thing the singer's parent's didn't ask this judge.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:12 am |
    • fintastic

      I suppose "Mary" should be off limits too.

      August 13, 2013 at 11:46 am |
    • John

      She'd better be prepared to wage war on all of Latin America, what with all those guys named Jesus.

      August 13, 2013 at 11:49 am |
  4. Doc Vestibule

    Useless Fact:
    In Denmark, parents must pick their child's name from a pre-approved list of around 7,000 names.

    August 13, 2013 at 8:18 am |
    • Saraswati

      A lot of countries have rules, including Malaysia which has recently become quite strict. But the problems here are in allowing individual magistrates to make their own decision, and in allowing religion to play a role.

      August 13, 2013 at 9:34 am |
    • skytag

      They also only have 5.6 million people, not 310 million. If we could only use 7000 names and they were even distributed each name would be use by 44,286 people.

      Other trivia: 3,000 of those names are for boys and 4,000 for girls.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:12 am |
      • Saraswati

        I always think in any generation males have only about 10 names. I read a study once which found that unusual names hurt males more than females (who aren't hurt at all), so I guess parents in general know what they're doing with the boring boy names.

        August 13, 2013 at 7:46 pm |
    • Ken

      Maybe that's why there aren't many (or any) celebrities from Denmark; no freedom to name their children Moon Unit, for example?

      August 13, 2013 at 11:52 am |
  5. theinexperiencedyouth

    Reblogged this on uggggh.

    August 13, 2013 at 8:07 am |
  6. Colin

    The idea that Jesus was the Messiah prophesized by the Tanaka is, of course, a paper thin facade. The two gospels that endeavor to link Jesus to the Messiah as prophesized in the Book of Isaiah are Matthew and Luke. The authors of both gospels were educated, practicing Jews. Of course the stories of Jesus birth that they wrote "fulfilled the prophesies." How could they not? They had a copy of the very prophesies they were "fulfilling" in their hands when they wrote their stories of Jesus' birth.

    It's a bit like the writer of a James Bond screen play fulfilling a prophesy that James Bond will kill the bad guy, get the girl and save the World as he writes the screen script for the upcoming Bond film.

    August 13, 2013 at 7:55 am |
    • Just the Facts Ma'am...

      I think it more akin to writing a biography of a dead President that you admire. Your work would likely contain all the things that tell the story about the man you imagine, not the man who actually lived and made mistakes. The biographer would have an already pre-determined general consensus to work from and then draw whatever conclusion they feel will sell the most books or show their idol in the best light.

      August 13, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
  7. Brother Maynard

    What scares me more is the probablity that this magistrate has handed out decisions based purely on biblical laws. This just happens to be the ruling where she received press.
    Makes you wonder if she has handed out the 'stoning' of adu.lterous women.
    Or of unruley children that do not "honor their mother and father"

    August 13, 2013 at 7:38 am |
    • fintastic

      Or bias towards those who are not christians!

      August 13, 2013 at 8:36 am |
    • Saraswati

      Given that she's in the family courts I think they'll need to check anything. she touched. These are the type of people who award custody to the Christian or het ero parent regardless of actual evidence of parenting skills.

      August 13, 2013 at 9:57 am |
    • tallulah13

      This lady is a lawsuit waiting to happen. Every one of her decisions should be reviewed for Constitutionality.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:24 am |
  8. ronvan

    While I agree that parents have the right to name their kids, what about common sense and reality? The child has NO choice in these matters, yet he/she will live with it forever! Psssibly chastised, bullied, by those that have NO respect for others!

    August 13, 2013 at 7:31 am |
    • Rev. Rick

      Actually that is incorrect. In most if not all states, it is a fairly simple matter to legally change your name, provided you are not doing so to avoid taxes or other debt.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:01 am |
    • skytag

      I don't think many people want the government to impose religious zealots' ideas of what is common sense on us.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:15 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      The child has not choice in the matter either when they have religion forced fed to them. It's only later in life when they can become exposed to science and empirical evidence that they can free themselves, just like if they want to change their name.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:43 am |
  9. doretha

    That is ridiculous the parents should be able to name their child whatever they want. What happen to their rights? This judge need to be removed from the bench if she can't put her personal beliefs to herself. Just ridiculous.

    August 13, 2013 at 7:12 am |
    • Mike the Massacred

      YUUUUUUHHHHP!!!

      August 13, 2013 at 7:17 am |
    • Neo Atheist

      She invalidated her ability to do her job by forcing her religious beliefs on others using the law.

      August 13, 2013 at 7:21 am |
  10. Saraswati

    "However in 2011, the name Messiah was the 633rd most popular name; in 2012, it was 387th most popular for baby boys. The 246 position jump made Messiah the fourth fastest growing baby name for boys in the U.S....The top ten names with largest popularity changes for baby boys: Major, Gael, Jase, Messiah, Brantley, Iker, King, Rory, Ari, Maverick."

    http://www.tennessean.com/article/20130811/NEWS21/308110090/Despite-TN-judge-s-order-Messiah-among-fastest-growing-baby-names?nclick_check=1

    August 13, 2013 at 7:08 am |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Thanks for that link as it really clears the way to shining a very bright light on this clueless unfair judge. It's just mind blowing.

      August 13, 2013 at 10:47 am |
  11. Neo Atheist

    Regardless of my views on religion. If the parents want to name their child Messiah, then its their right to do so, the judge has no right or business telling those parents what to name their child. Take away the meaning of the word and what its connected it, it is actually a very nice and beautiful name.

    August 13, 2013 at 6:53 am |
  12. Neo Atheist

    Messiah? More like Messedupinthehead.

    August 13, 2013 at 6:50 am |
  13. Mike the Massacred

    I live in TN, and I cannot wait to find out who this Judge is.

    SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE, who gives a s**t if these ignorant parents want to name their son after some story book protagonist.

    Besides, Hispanics name their sons Jesus ALL THE TIME.

    August 13, 2013 at 6:31 am |
    • Saraswati

      I used to live in the south and I'm so glad I moved back to the sane world. Elsewhere such idiocy isn't even imaginable. Any official would probably not even think of such nonsense, but if they did they would know that it would mean an instant end to their job.

      August 13, 2013 at 7:11 am |
    • skytag

      "I live in TN, and I cannot wait to find out who this Judge is."

      Well don't just sit there, then, read the article.

      August 13, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
  14. Dlchahn

    Kids have enough to deal with in their lives that parents should not do anything to make that worse on the child...other 'kids' are cruel!!!!!!! People are 'cruel' and we as parents need to put our children above ourselves in EVERYTHING no matter what the issue is!!!!!!!

    August 13, 2013 at 5:51 am |
  15. Eunyce

    If the Judge was so critical as to make them rename their baby, why not insist that they get married. Obviously a child out of wedlock is against her religious beliefs as well. I think it's a darn shame, and I think that the judge was wrong and seriously out of line in declaring they rename their child. That option, naming our children, should not be in the hands of the law. If that were the case, then let's take Ms. Paltrow to court for naming her baby after a fruit, Apple, or Kanye and Kim for naming their child after an airline, let's just go through and rename all the babies and let the courts rule what we are allowed to name our children! I'm not saying that I agree with the name, but it's not my baby and it's not my business as to what the parents decide to call their child. I'm outraged.

    August 13, 2013 at 2:01 am |
  16. atomD21

    Way to go, Bible Belt! Keeping stupidity and ignorance in Jesus' name strong! This Magistrate needs to be congratulated for her stellar movement toward complete absurdity!

    August 13, 2013 at 1:53 am |
  17. BusterMcCheese

    They can still keep the religious theme, but the spelling might be an issue. I forgot is it prophet or profit?

    August 13, 2013 at 1:35 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      It depends on the church.

      August 13, 2013 at 1:43 am |
  18. KBinTX

    According to Social Security Administration figures, the popularity of the name "Messiah" in 2012 ranked:

    387 out of 1000

    http://www.ssa.gov/cgi-bin/babyname.cgi

    (More importantly – why are we paying the bean counters to calculate baby name popularity at SSA)

    August 13, 2013 at 12:28 am |
    • lol?? Pithiest, YES!!

      Pith is not in the top 1000 names for any year of birth in the last 13 years.

      August 13, 2013 at 12:36 am |
      • KBinTX

        What is wrong with parents! Better name than Messiah

        August 13, 2013 at 12:39 am |
    • Saraswati

      It takes just a matter of seconds to run a query to find the most populart names so it really isn't costing anyone anything. Analysts run these kinds of queries for fun while munching chips on a break. They can be useful, though, in estimating and predicting ident ity mix-ups and fraud.

      August 13, 2013 at 6:20 am |
  19. 14marcotony

    I don't agree with the judge's reasoning, but think the judge made the right call, though misguided. The partents are just setting up the kid for a torrid childhood.

    August 13, 2013 at 12:19 am |
    • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

      It's none of yours or anybody else's business what somebody names their child. Everything was wrong with this case. The complaint, the fact it got to court, the decision and the rationale behind the decision. Nothing was right in this case.

      August 13, 2013 at 12:23 am |
      • Dippy

        Your, not yours.

        August 13, 2013 at 12:28 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Duly noted.

          August 13, 2013 at 12:29 am |
      • 14marcotony

        I hear what you're saying. But I think patents can go too far. I just think they're setting their child up for abuse. I don't disagree with it as a matter of law; I object to it out of ethics.

        August 13, 2013 at 12:34 am |
        • skytag

          This has nothing to do with ethics, nit wit. And no, the magistrate didn't make the right call. It's not your place to judge or the government's place to impose other people's values on parents.

          August 13, 2013 at 3:43 am |
        • 14marcotony

          Again, another strawman. I'm not advocating the imposition of anything. As I argued before, parents can often go too far in naming their kids.

          August 13, 2013 at 4:16 pm |
        • 14marcotony

          And as to the ethics question, of course it's always a matter of ethics when it comes to raising and labeling children. As babies, or kids for that matter, we have choice as to the name we are given or what religious or cultural nonsense we taught; we helpless in that respect. That's why it's the parents duty to look out for their kids well-being by seeing them as humans and not as objects or possessions to be labeled and indoctrinated however they see fit without any social and psychological consequences.

          August 13, 2013 at 4:28 pm |
    • tallulah13

      I wouldn't be so sure about that. Parents are naming kids all sorts of things these days. What might have been mocked a generation or two ago is commonplace now.

      August 13, 2013 at 12:32 am |
      • 14marcotony

        True, but "Messiah" seems a too flippant.

        August 13, 2013 at 12:35 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          In what sense?

          August 13, 2013 at 12:48 am |
        • 14marcotony

          By that I mean it's not serious. Unless they really believe their child is a zealous leader, a deliverer of the jewish people. Or humanity, if one's a Christian.

          August 13, 2013 at 12:57 am |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Perhaps they don't understand the etymology of the word but it doesn't make the name any less serious. If I named my child Cool Runnings, would that be any less serious than naming him John?

          August 13, 2013 at 1:16 am |
        • 14marcotony

          Look, unless you believe that names are just a bunch of sounds with no semantic or social purchase or repercussions then you'll always be on the wrong side of the argument. Names are how we identify each other. They are what help define who we are. What we call ourselves have certain consequences. Just imagine, for instance, some parent decides to name their child Hitler, say, or Nazi. How do you think that child will fear when he/she has to spend 18 or more years in school? Or apply for jobs? Or try to form relationships with other groups of peole? What we call ourselves matter. Or better put, what we are called. Because in reality, as babies, we dont name ourselves. Our parents are the ones who name us. We only have that ability when we reach the legal age to change our names. What the parents did, in my opinion was thoughtless. I don't think they stopped for one moment and wondered what the child would think or how they would feel about the name, let alone the social repercussions. Don't get mw wrong, parents should be creative in naming their children, I'm all for that. But it should be thoughtful and within the bounds of reason.

          August 13, 2013 at 2:25 am |
        • skytag

          @14marcotony: Look, it's not a name I'd recommend either, but it's your place or anyone else's to tell a parent what she can name her child. That's just not how things work. I think lots of parents give their kids names I think are stupid, but that's their right and none of my business. If the name causes the kid problems he and him mom can deal with it as they see fit. Personally, I don't know that it's nearly as big a deal as you seem to think it is.

          August 13, 2013 at 3:49 am |
        • 14marcotony

          This whole argument that it's my place to tell a parent what to call their child is a strawman argument. Nowhere in any of my comments have I claimed such a right. The article asked for an opinion and I gave it. I'm advocating putting laws in place that tell parents what to name their children either. In a free society I believe nothing is sacred and nothing should be above criticism.

          August 13, 2013 at 4:13 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          No, it's small mindedness that's always going to lose an argument. Names are just labels. What's in a label? If ribeye steak was called a dog sh!t, would it taste any different? Sure people attach different connotations to words and words have semantic value but semantics and names don't mix. A name loses its semantic value. My real name is Gary which is a word of Germanic origin for spear. I am not however a bladed weapon. Frank Zappa named his daughter Moon Unit yey she isn't some sort of planetary satellite or Lunar base. Of course some people will maintain their connotations, so they may view a child named Hitler as being vicariously evil. Screw them. I'd tell my children that anybody who judges you by your name doesn't deserve your time.

          August 13, 2013 at 4:43 am |
        • 14marcotony

          If you think labels are just labels with no social repercussions, then I don't you know what you're talking about.

          August 13, 2013 at 4:19 pm |
        • I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that

          Yet.

          August 13, 2013 at 4:44 am |
        • Saraswati

          @Dave,

          "If ribeye steak was called a dog sh!t, would it taste any different?"

          Yes, actually, the research indicates it would:

          http://chemse.oxfordjournals.org/content/34/3/187.full

          August 13, 2013 at 6:31 am |
  20. Reality

    Dear "magistrate"/judge Lu Ann,

    Please respond to the following–

    The Apostles' Creed 2013: (updated by yours truly and based on the studies of historians and theologians of the past 200 years)

    Should I believe in a god whose existence cannot be proven
    and said god if he/she/it exists resides in an unproven,
    human-created, spirit state of bliss called heaven??

    I believe there was a 1st century CE, Jewish, simple,
    preacher-man who was conceived by a Jewish carpenter
    named Joseph living in Nazareth and born of a young Jewish
    girl named Mary. (Some say he was a mamzer.)

    Jesus was summarily crucified for being a temple rabble-rouser by
    the Roman troops in Jerusalem serving under Pontius Pilate,

    He was buried in an unmarked grave and still lies
    a-mouldering in the ground somewhere outside of
    Jerusalem.

    Said Jesus' story was embellished and "mythicized" by
    many semi-fiction writers. A descent into Hell, a bodily resurrection
    and ascension stories were promulgated to compete with the
    Caesar myths. Said stories were so popular that they
    grew into a religion known today as Catholicism/Christianity
    and featuring dark-age, daily wine to blood and bread to body rituals
    called the eucharistic sacrifice of the non-atoning Jesus.

    Amen
    (references used are available upon request)

    August 12, 2013 at 11:27 pm |
    • lamelionheart

      Sired Reality...

      Just what the hoot do you really now about God's kingdom domains..? Have you not read in the bible that our bodies wherein resides the domains of God's kingdoms..? Is it not so written that our bodies are also God's buildings wherein and upon God's treed generations of His families have and still do take up residencies..?

      August 12, 2013 at 11:42 pm |
      • lamelionheart

        Furthermore Reality...

        Our bodies are constructed from the atomized cosmologies thusly being as cellular chasms of atomically constrained cloisters of physical orderliness... It is within our bodies that on a subatomic scale of finitely miniscule degrees that all of God's treed family generations have ever been living out their Life without interfering onto what their embodied buildings are so doing be it righteous or even unrighteous...

        August 12, 2013 at 11:49 pm |
      • ,

        What does ..? mean?

        August 12, 2013 at 11:51 pm |
      • skytag

        "Just what the hoot do you really now about God's kingdom domains..?"

        That they're fictional. (That's all of your word salad I could force myself to read.)

        August 13, 2013 at 4:00 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.