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Thread: Naming laws - what do you think?
February 10th, 2014 11:00 AM #11
I'm from Canada, there's no laws here but I am totally in favour of them. I think there's a big misconception about naming laws. People see that as meaning "You can name your child Mary, Jane or Paula, and those are your only options" which is not the case. Even the countries with lists of allowed names have an appeal process if the parents want to pick a name not on the list, and there are exemptions for parents who are foreign nationals. Makes sense to me.
I do support that names should correspond with the grammatical rules of the language spoken. That's also a difficult concept for Anglophone countries, because we don't have gendered nouns, saying things like "I ain't gotta do nothing" is allowed (though not grammatically correct, there are places where that's the usual construction). English is not a dying language, and doesn't need preservation the way other languages might.
I ABSOLUTELY think the laws that say a name can not make the child suffer, or compromise their integrity are fantastic. The only thing is that that's so subjective. Things like "Tallulah does the Hula in Hawaii" or whatever that was, yes, the whole name is ridiculous, but Tallulah does no harm. Adolf is a legitimate name, however that kid from the States named "Adolf Hitler" is going to be faced with a lot of judgement when it was not his choice to bear a name like that.
I don't think names should really be a personal expression of the parents, so I'm pretty pro name laws. We're supposed to be doing the best for our children, and I honestly think name laws are in place to protect the children. The language preservation component, while personally interesting to me, is secondary.Lucia
Name aficionada, traveller, teacher, wonderfully enamoured
Sela Ivy, Vivian Lilac, Beatrix Zinnia and Bastian Edmund, Joscelin Amos, Gideon Felix
February 10th, 2014 11:43 AM #13Senior Member
- Join Date
- Feb 2014
Names rejected in Iceland can usually be put into these categories:
The name already exists in Icelandic, and people are not permitted to use a foreign or otherwise alternative spelling. E.g. Aaron (they would have to use Aron instead), Daniyal (Daníel), Eleanor (Elínór), Sarah (Sara), Erykah (Erika/Eiríka). This is definitely the largest category.
The name is already in use for the opposite sex. E.g. Abel, Axel, Örn for girls, Gígja for boys.
The name is foreign and doesn't work with Icelandic grammar/spelling. E.g. Ben, Chris, Krishna, Alpine, London, Grace, Maxine.
The name is not in the nominative case. E.g. Ólaf (instead of Ólafur), Víking (Víkingur), Úlf (Úlfur), Regin (Reginn).
People wanted to use a stand alone name as part of a compound. E.g. Arnarsteinn, Aðalbjörgvin, Hannadís, Kristínbjörg.
The name has an absurd meaning. E.g. Engifer (Ginger), Ektavon (Realhope), Finngálkn (Brachiosaurus / Monster), Grimmi (The Cruel One), Skallagrímur (Bald Grímur), Eldflaug (Rocket).
Most of them I can definitely see their point. If my parents had wanted to name me The Cruel One, I would have wanted someone to stop them. Although, as an immigrant, if I could show that Grimmi existed as a name in my culture, I could use it here.
Last edited by jackal; February 10th, 2014 at 11:58 AM.
February 10th, 2014 12:10 PM #15Senior Member
- Join Date
- Sep 2013
Thank you! I couldn't have said it better. I was disturbed by the "it's YOUR kid" comment too. Like a piece of property. We are entrusted with our children and yes they are ours in the sense that I'm responsible for them until they are of legal age. But when naming our children, we tried to remember that we were naming another human being who would have to go through life with that name. I'm not sure about how I feel about naming laws. It is something that feels a bit foreign to me as an American but I can see the benefit. I do think names like Adolf Hitler (like one previous poster pointed out) should be illegal. I wish everyone was just required to post their name for comment on Nameberry to see the feedback and could still then choose (but at least with a little more knowledge). I heard this week that one of the disastrous teen mom tv show reality show 'stars' (using that word very lightly) has decided on Kaiser for a boy. That was disturbing and I'm hoping someone points out to her the significant problems with the name. However, from what we've seen on the show, I doubt that will matter.Mom to... Augustine Mark "Augie", India Marie "Indie", Theodore Odell "Teddy" and Philippa Lee "Pippa"
February 10th, 2014 12:35 PM #17
I think naming rules are overall a very positive thing.
Obviously it can be taken too far, but in general I agree that the government can remain objective in the matter where irresponsible parents can't always.
I think it's great that most countries who have laws of this sort seem pretty open to allowing reasonable names. And allowing immigrants more flexibility.
As you've explained the grammar in Icelandic I can see how important it would be for someone living in that culture to have a name that complied.
It would never happen, but I think it would be a positive step for the US.Olivia/Livia/Livy/Liv : Thessaly/Darah/Bethel : Noelle/Eve
Benedict/Eli: Jude/Zane: Luke/Darius : Levi/Phineas/Calvin
February 10th, 2014 01:48 PM #19
Augustine because it belongs to St. Augustine, who disgust me. Who decides what names are OK and what names are not?
Parents chose names for their kid. They chose names they like. For ever. And that's OK, as long it's not really offensive (Shit, etc.)
Kaiser is nice name. Just because you connect this name with lot of baggage doesn't mean everyone will.
If name has weird nickname (Cornelia nn Corn) doesn't mean child will get one.
If child get unusual name, doesn't mean children will have trouble.
You can't feel sorry for child over imaginary problems. Full stop.