Top Five Friday


There is a lot to be said about a person’s name. Many stereotypes and opinions are formed merely on the basis of a first name. We all know the black community is famous for naming their children after such things as luxurious cars, brown liquor, a mixed drink, a popular celebrity, or maybe a combination of the mother’s and father’s first names to create that one-of-a-kind even harder name to pronounce.

But surprisingly, black people aren’t the only ones these days with the ingenious knack for putting a spin on traditional names.  Parents of other races are expressing their selves just as much by giving their children distinctively original names and unique spellings as well.  They have gone as far as  naming their children after fruit, cities, days of the week, and fairies to mention a few. 

No wonder Pope Benedict XVI recently made a plea last month to all parents to give their children more traditional Christian names.  The Daily Mail quoted him as saying

…a child’s Christian name is an ‘indelible sign from the Holy Spirit’ and protects family life, which is ‘being threatened’.

According to the article, a priest can refuse to baptise a child if the name given is not recognised. More interesting is that Denmark, Spain, Germany, Portugal and Argentina are among those countries which publish lists of acceptable names from which parents must choose.  Portugal has banned the names Lolita, Maradona and Mona Lisa.

An amazing Black History fact proven by the 2000 U.S. Census data reveals that while parents have a choice in the right of the birth name of their children, there are some last names passed down from generation to generation that just can’t shake the racial connotations and are automatically dubbed a common African American surname.    

Today’s Top Five Friday topic: The Blackest Last Names in America

90% – Washington
75% – Jefferson
53% – Jackson
46% – Williams
37% – Jones

One of the most lasting legacies is in a name; how will you make history?  Do you believe that parents do their children a disservice by naming them untraditional names?  Should we take pride in our black surnames, or are these just slave names too?

Published in: on February 25, 2011 at 11:32 am  Comments (3)  
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