Religious Judge Forces Parents to Change Their Baby's Name (VIDEO)

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baby name Messiah

Um, have you heard about the baby named "Messiah" in Tennessee who has now been renamed "Martin" by the judge in his child support hearing -- who doesn't believe he's deserving of the "title"?

Yes -- I said the judge renamed him. And his poor mother, Jaleesa Martin, and his father had no say in the matter. They're now being forced to change their son's name on his birth certificate all because this judge is freaking out about the whole Jesus connection and fears that the boy will face problems growing up in a county full of super-religious folks who might not appreciate hearing the name Messiah associated with anyone but our Lord and Savior.

(Jesus Christ. What year is this again?)

And I'm sure you're wondering how these parents got themselves into a mess with the baby's name in the first place. As it turns out, Jalessa and Messiah's dad went to court to try and work out what the child's last name should be -- and that's when Child Support Magistrate Lu Ann Ballew decided his first name presented a problem. Which is just plain ridiculous.

I guess I should go ahead and put this out there -- I'm a semi-practicing Catholic, so I believe in God and Jesus and all that good stuff.

But am I at all offended or put off by a beautiful little kid who just happens to be named Messiah? Not in the least. It's actually pretty cute. And it seems to suit the little guy. And his parents should be able to name him anything they damn well please and not be forced to change his moniker at any given point in time.

Before you go defending the judge and figuring she probably just had this kid's best interests at heart -- take a look at this video to hear more about her reasoning for the name change.

OMG. Did she scare the hell out of you too? I feel like I need to go and hide and say a few rosaries for protection or something.

And while Jaleesa is smart to continue calling her son Messiah and appeal the decision -- considering how twisted this whole situation is, I'd probably give some serious thought to moving out of Cocke County if I were her. Who wants to stay in a place where you don't even have control over what you call your own kid?!?

Maybe she'll get lucky and whoever hears her appeal will immediately realize just how nuts the case is and will change the baby's name back to Messiah. But if the decision is upheld? Yeah. I'm thinking Jalessa should high-tail it out of there as soon as possible and head to a place where you're allowed to name your baby whatever you want. (Like pretty much any other county in America.) 

Do you think this judge's decision is justified?


Image via WBIR

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Taisie Taisie

Ugh... I could say soooo many things about her changing his name! And no, I didn't watch the video, I just flat out think it's wrong for ANY reason! Hope she appeals, and I'd appeal to the highest court possible if I had to!

Taisie Taisie

Oh, and just want to add that I think the judge should be reprimanded, she is supposed to look at things objectively!

nonmember avatar Piper

Umm... In Egyptian mythology, the falcon headed god Horus was also called Messiah if not other comparable names to Jesus Christ. To have a self righteous, bible thumping judge tell someone they can't give their child whatever name they want is ludicrous. What happened to separating church and state? A judge should leave their religious and other personal morals at the door.

nonmember avatar Lucia Poulter

the name Messiah was actually one of the fastest rising boy names for babies born last year, probably because it was on a reality show.

nonmember avatar TopContributor

Meh, to me it's funny that the dumb parents would name their child Messiah. Lol Talk about falling short and being a big dissapointment. Anyway, yeah the parents should appeal and see who wins. IMO it's no different than any other distasteful ugly name that poverty stricken-uneducated parents give their offspring!


Separationof church and state! Butt Out! This is wrong on sooo many levels.

nonmember avatar kaerae

Also, the "best interest of the child" standard is reserved for custody, visitation and placement proceedings only. It is not a blanket statute judges may use to deprive parents of their constitutional rights in an unrelated matter.

Christa DuBois

I agree with Taisie. Why should she change her childs name (the one she carried for nine months and birthed herself) because this woman (judge or not) religiously disagrees? What year is it? The judge should ABSOLUTELY be reprimanded! Great job on 'objectivity' lady.

lulou lulou

I couldnt get to the link, but we have a relative with the middle name Christine, who made need to start on this paperwork too.

Brain... BrainyMommy

Unacceptable behavior by the judge. I hope this ruling is overturned and the judge reprimanded for being crazy.

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