[By Nic Lindh on Friday, 06 April 2007]
Update: They fought the law and they won. The couple’s daughter is now officially named Metallica. /Update
A couple in Sweden have, for whatever reason, decided to name their baby daughter Metallica.
The problem (for them, not their daughter, who obviously is going to have whole other set of problems) is that the Swedish National Tax Board have refused to let the couple register the name.
A non-Swede would be excused to ask, “What does a Tax Board have to do with this?”
Allow me to explain. Basically the way things work in Sweden is that no matter what the issue, there’s a government agency to take care of you. Some people kept giving their children ridiculous names that caused them to be mocked and ridiculed. So a government agency was given the authority to oversee names in the interest of making sure that children weren’t given names that could cause hardship later in life.
Those people are obviously still on the job.
The thing I always wonder about is how they handle immigrant names. If Abdul and Hined move to Sweden from some faraway land, and then choose to name their child after the arab version of Metallica, how would the Swedish National Tax Board know?
I’m guessing there’s an efficient bureaucracy leaving no stone unturned, with consultants brought in from all over the world as needed, able to discern that a child’s name actually means Frigtard in Hindi…