By now you've probably heard about the Tennessee magistrate who changed a baby's name from Messiah to Martin because, "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 was only involved in the issue because of the parents' dispute over the boy's last name. His first name wasn't even intended to be part of the court proceeding.
Now don't get us wrong. Messiah is a pretty crummy name, despite its rising popularity. It's a lot for a kid to live up to, and the judge was right that it could cause the boy some problems, especially in terms of negative reactions by some devout Christians. But when it comes to names, judges have no say over questionable taste or whether a kid's name is going to be the joke of the schoolyard. If they did, we wouldn't have celebrity baby names like North West, Apple or Blue Ivy. Simply put, parents can name their children what they want.
More importantly, the very First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution strictly prohibits our government (including our judges) from imposing religion upon us. That's exactly what this judge did to these parents.
We're glad that the mother will have none of it, and also that the ACLU of Tennessee has offered to help her fight this unconstitutional ruling.