So… a couple braniacs in New Jersey named their kid Adolf Hitler.
And then they had a couple more kids, who they named after other nazis.
All the kids have been taken from them and are now in foster care.
Regardless of the distaste that the vast majority of human beings hold for Adolf Hitler and nazis in general, should the government be allowed to tell us what we may or may not name our children?
Sure those kids are in for a life of prejudice, beatings on the playground, and being laughed at. But many people find other names equally disdainful.
Several religions prohibit certain names for children as being offensive (Muslims prohibit the name “Allah” or anything that is too similar; several Christian sects prohibit the name “Jesus” being given to an infant, but we don’t see thousands of Hispanic-Americans who name their kids Jesus being hauled away). So what exactly makes one name more offensive than another? What makes a name so bad, that the government will take your child away if you bestow it upon your child?
Is it genocide? If so, we need to lock up everyone of Slavic persuasion who has named their child “Vlad.” After all, Vlad the Impaler killed about 40,000 (give or take a few thousand) by publicly impaling them.
Why not take the children of all the Italians who name their kid Benito (Mussolini killed about 300,000)
Or the Russians who name their kids Josef (Stalin killed about 23million people)?
Or Chinese people who name their child Mao (Mao Zedong killed between 49 and 78 million people depending on the source)?
Charles Taylor killed 220,000 in the Liberian genocide between 1989 and 1996. Should my parents be faced with government reprisals for naming me Charles?
The names of some of the worst genocide perpetrators in history are not off limits. Why should Adolf Hitler be?
Now before you go thinking I’m some kind of nazi sympathizer, or Hitler lover, let me set that record straight. I am neither.
But I do believe that everyone in America should be free to name their kid whatever they want, free from government interference.
If you want to name your new twins Bevis & Butthead, more power to ya! Want to name your baby boy Satan? Have at it. How about naming your kid “Big-Dumb-Jerk-Baby?” Fine with me. How about naming your new-born daughter “Slut?” Well, if you think it’s appropriate, go to town.
The fact that I don’t like the name you choose for your kid should not be open to public debate or governmental inquiry.
If you want to name your child something that you like, but may subject him or her to ridicule and derision by the masses, that’s your decision. It might be a bad one, and your kids will probably not thank you for it, but it is yours none the less.
Johnny Cash wrote a whole song about the topic! A Boy Named Sue.
One of the most cherished and sacrosanct concepts in American law, enshrined in our Constitution, is the right to free speech. I think that Evelyn Beatrice Hall put it best when she wrote: “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
What do you think?