Without Government, Where Would We Get Our Last Names?

Alice Salles Comments

The state of Louisiana appears to have an issue letting parents name their child whatever they like, giving us all yet another reason to dislike having to bow to seemingly harmless government rules.

Baby Gisele, born just before the end of 2018, has no legal name. That’s because when Gisele’s mother, Laura Betancourth, tried naming her daughter Gisele Betancourth-McAnnally, following her husband’s tradition of having a paternal surname follow the mother’s maiden name, the state denied her request. Because they tried following the Honduran tradition,  and because they were honest when filing their paperwork, making sure the dad’s two last names were properly spelled out, the state dismissed the family’s chosen name. After all, the little girl was not being given her father’s last names, and the state just cannot handle it.

name government rules

Despite this issue and the state’s refusal to recognize the parent’s will, this isn’t the Betancourth-McAnnally couple’s first child. And before you ask, no. Their first son was not born in another state.

In 2012, when their son Gael was born, the Louisiana Vital Records had no problem accepting the given surname consisting of both his mom’s and dad’s last names. Perhaps because of an error when filling up the paperwork or because the government clerk just wasn’t paying attention, the couple was granted their wish then. But now that rules are actually being followed and bureaucrats are claiming to have the right to tell the parents how to name their child, the couple has yet another problem.

With tax season in full bloom, they are unable to declare their youngest because they don’t have a piece of paper from the state proving that Gisele was, indeed, born. So what are they going to do? Probably name their child whatever the state tells them to.

From Cradle To Grave

We all know government in the United States, both local and federal, has too much power.

It regulates the water we drink, the food we eat, what kind of car we should drive, and what we do on our own property. But perhaps, some of the most bizarre and absurd rules we often see implemented involve children, parenting, and how close the state can get to basically dictating your child’s life from the moment she’s born to the moment she dies.

From compulsory education to rules that send parents to jail for letting children walk to school on their own, government has a terrible track record when it comes to leaving families alone. What’s worse, many of these rules actually endanger children, as parents are stripped of their rights to care for their own only to see their kids being sent to a foster home to die in the hands of total strangers.

While it’s almost silly to worry about name-related laws, especially because the family’s right to name their child has been upheld in court rulings in the past, it is just a small example of how much power the state exerts over the family. And when states have so much to say as to how you should raise your child, it becomes almost impossible to see that the young are raised to think for themselves.

It’s almost as if governments had an incentive to keep us as dependent on it as possible, from the beginning until the bitter end.


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