Not the Mes­siah, just a boy called Martin

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SUNDAY PEOPLE -

A Ten­nessee judge’s de­ci­sion to change a baby’s first name from Mes­siah to Martin is draw­ing strong re­ac­tions from peo­ple who be­lieve the judge over­stepped her pow­ers and those who think par­ents’ cre­ativ­ity should have some lim­its. The con­tro­versy started when the boy’s mother sought an or­der to es­tab­lish pa­ter­nity. It in­cluded a re­quest for the judge to de­ter­mine the child’s last name. When Child Sup­port Mag­is­trate Lu Ann Ballew heard Mes­siah’s first name, she de­cided it should be changed, too, say­ing the child could face prob­lems with the name Mes­siah. The name on his birth cer­tifi­cate was Mes­siah De­Shawn Martin. The judge changed it to Martin De­Shawn McCul­lough, giv­ing the boy his fa­ther’s last name while re­plac­ing Mes­siah with his mother’s sur­name.

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