A name is the verbal manifestation of one’s identity and of one’s relationship to wider reality. As we are social creatures who live within a culture inherited from our ancestors, I think that we should respect our heritage by giving traditional names to our children. We thereby symbolize in word the intergenerational continuity of our people as well as acknowledge our existential debt to those who lived before us. For Christians, it is moreover important to pick Christian names, and children hopefully will develop a relationship with their patronal namesakes.
Unfortunately, democratic man only considers the current generation; ancestors and descendants do not matter. The practice of endlessly innovative naming in our society originates in this rebellion against all standards and authority apart from contemporary ego. We see the same reckless spirit with the adoption of more and more boys’ names for girls—consider how Avery, Kelly, and Ashley are slowly becoming girls’ names—so much so that boys are now ridiculed for having “girls’ names.”
And then there are pretentious and/or guttersnipe fads, where mothers give their spawn the names of television characters or celebrities. Consider all the white trash in America who have been named after soap operas and W.B. shows. Pop culture has replaced sacred scripture as the chief inspiration for our society.
For a humorous take on the decadence of faddish boys’ names, here is George Carlin (rated R):
Tucker gets what he deserves!