Considering baby boy name "Barack," your opinion...? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
Old 11-05-2013, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
Wildflower's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 841
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

We like unusual, distinctive, inspiring names....We also have a trend of naming boys after heroic historical figures, and suddenly I'm seized by the thought of naming our new baby boy after president number 44! Obviously I'm a big fan....will never forget the tears of exhilaration and joy the last 2 election nights...Also it has a pretty sweet meaning on it's own, according to this: http://nameberry.com/babyname/Barack has Swahili and Hebrew roots and can mean "thunderbolt, lightning; or blessing". I can imagine some cute nicknames..."Rocky" (would be spelled more like Racki, but probably just spoken not written anyway) for one...Also young Barack went by Barry...we could do that for a nickname, or even from that to "Bear" for extra cute baby times ;)

 

But here are some concerns...My community is uber-liberal, more green party even than democrat, and lots of our friends (who were right there with me weeping with joy after the election) are pretty sour on Obama now--not big enough changes have happened for their taste. And this points to the fact that lots of different people have different strong critical feelings about Obama--would it make Barack a tough name to have? BUT, it will be a good ten years, I'm sure, before my son will be politically aware, and by then won't Barack Obama be more of an inspiring legacy than a current topic of debate?  And people name lots of kids after people that had big critics..I mean most of the presidents' names have been pretty popular baby names, right? 

 

Would love to gift new sweet babe with an inspiring, strong name...Ok if it's unusual, but hoping the little guy wouldn't grow up getting bothered about it...OK, please give me your opinion, I won't take offense in any way, thank you!!!!

Wildflower is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 11-05-2013, 06:13 PM
 
LilyTiger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 1,995
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 38 Post(s)

I would hesitate in part because, as a political scientist, Obama's final legacy is still quite unclear.  From a progressive standpoint, there's a lot he's been as bad as or worse than Bush about.  But even leaving that aside, it seems like a lot of pressure to put on a little one, especially when the person in question is still in power.  I guess my concern is naming your kid after him and then some horrible scandal coming out that causes you to seriously regret things.


That being said, if you love the name and love the man, I would go for it.  It's not up to other people to decide whether a name you love and that has special meaning for you is good or bad.  And ultimately, if the baby will probably go by a nickname anyway, most people won't make the connection, and those that do will probably keep their mouths shut. 


Beautiful baby girl born 8/13/2012. Little star baby lost at 10 weeks pregnant, 12/18/2013. Currently due 12/13/2014 with a rainbow.
LilyTiger is offline  
Old 11-05-2013, 06:18 PM
 
cynthiamoon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,573
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by LilyTiger View Post
 

I would hesitate in part because, as a political scientist, Obama's final legacy is still quite unclear.  From a progressive standpoint, there's a lot he's been as bad as or worse than Bush about.  But even leaving that aside, it seems like a lot of pressure to put on a little one, especially when the person in question is still in power.  I guess my concern is naming your kid after him and then some horrible scandal coming out that causes you to seriously regret things.

 

Definitely something to worry about! 

 

But even a dead political or otherwise well known figure is not something I like at all. For one, it saddles the child with defending themselves against both the good and the bad of that name forever. 

 

Can you imagine the 100th time someone compares your generosity to that of the OTHER Theresa? Or worse, calls you out on crimes of your namesake you aren't even aware of as a kid? 

 

Ick, no. I like names that kids can like, but that do not seek to define them. After all, we don't know who they will become yet. 


Writing about life-long learning and discovery at: www.neoapprentice.com 

:: A neo-apprentice knows there are no true masters. 

 

25yo FTM to a Wiggle Panda diaper.gif, student teacher read.gif, newlywed love.gif 

cynthiamoon is online now  
Old 11-05-2013, 06:20 PM
 
cynthiamoon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,573
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)

That said, I met a baby girl named Sagan (after Carl) today and thought it was damn cute. But he's like the Mr. Rogers of astrophysics, and it's less of a household name, so it seems much lower risk than a politician. Then again… he did die professing that one day we'd meet the aliens who share the cosmos with us, and that could be the basis of some jokes for sure. 


Writing about life-long learning and discovery at: www.neoapprentice.com 

:: A neo-apprentice knows there are no true masters. 

 

25yo FTM to a Wiggle Panda diaper.gif, student teacher read.gif, newlywed love.gif 

cynthiamoon is online now  
Old 11-05-2013, 06:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
Wildflower's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 841
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

Thanks for these thoughts, just the kind of stuff I need to think about, keep 'em coming! I'm curious to see if there will be any yes votes at all.................

Wildflower is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 12:52 PM
 
mareseatoats's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 1,016
Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 20 Post(s)

I can see potential problems, as others have brought up, but I like it. I think it is a nice name, with nice meaning, with good connotations for you. I like the nickname ideas, too! Your baby will take whatever name you give him and make it his own. It is an unusual choice, but I would be a yes vote ;)


Girl absolutely in love with boy and our DD (11/06), DS1 (08/11) and DS2 (brand new!)
mareseatoats is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 01:34 PM
 
dalia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,969
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Lots of people in the world named Barack. If you like the name itself then I would go for it. If someone doesn't like your child because his name is Barack then they are ignorant anyway! And though I went canvassing for the prez back in the day, I'm pretty mad at him now. But that has nothing to do with your child!

Wife to one amazing husband superhero.gif, SAHM to DS bouncy.gif 10/09, DS babyboy.gif 10/19,  one furbaby dog2.gif, and lots of chicken3.gif!

 
joy.gif

dalia is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 02:00 PM
 
Katie8681's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Northern Cali
Posts: 674
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
"Baraka" is a common name in Kenya. The fact that it means "blessing" is nice too.

At home amongst the redwoods treehugger.gif with my husband and my son, born 7/5/11 familybed1.gif  Instant CNM, just add caffix.gif !

Katie8681 is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 02:48 PM
Dia
 
Dia's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 554
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think it's a beautiful name.

Mama to one amazing ecbaby2.gif
Dia is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 04:49 PM
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,342
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I probably wouldn't pick a name that is so strongly associated with one particular public figure, be it a politician, entertainer, religious figure, or whoever. I feel like it would be difficult for that person to be perennially associated with the public figure of that name. At least if someone names their kid after Mother Teresa, or Justin Bieber, or Dale Earnhardt, or whoever, the association isn't as automatic. The names of the last several presidents haven't been distinctive--there are lots of men named Richard, Jimmy, Ronald, George, and Bill. A kid given that name would not automatically be associated with that president, so he could have a name that was important to his parents while also having other associations in the minds of other people. Barack, not so much. (Unless you are in a part of the world where it is more common, of course.)

erigeron is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 05:06 PM
 
DaisyO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 157
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

Do it!  It's a great name, and, despite all of his failings, B.H.O. is a great man and a gift to our country.  Also your boy will be himself long after Barack is out of the picture.  I went to high school with a guy called Carter, after Jimmy Carter, and people weren't constantly referencing the "Crisis of Confidence" speech or anything!  He was just himself.

DaisyO is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 05:44 PM
 
lmk1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 775
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

Personally, I can't imagine my child after a current political figure.  Like a PP mentioned, we don't know his final legacy, no matter whether you agree with his politics or not.  Can you imagine if someone had named their kid "Nixon" because they liked Richard Nixon, and then Watergate happened?  Now I've met some people (mostly from Latin America) who were named Stalin, Lenin ... obviously their parents admired those figures...

I do think Barack has a nice sound to it as a name, but I think people will associate it with the president long after he's out of office.  I'm also not much into making any kind of statements with my kids' names ...especially boys.  It makes me think of that song "A boy named Sue".

lmk1 is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 06:44 PM
 
philomom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Pacific Northwest
Posts: 9,263
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
I think Barack makes a great middle name.

Middle names are good places IMO for unwieldy family names, cool parent quirks or other ideas.

Ron Howard's kids supposedly all have middle names of the cities they were conceived in. But I could only find Bryce Dallas Howard as a certainty on the internet just now.

I know a couple whose kids have Trek middle names......

Benjamin Riker

Bethany Troi

Bradley Dax

I chose the "honor dead relatives" with our middle names. Families like that and it got me some well needed brownie points at the time.
philomom is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 07:22 PM
 
baileyb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,323
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

I want to say that Barak or something similar is a biblical name too. I will have to look it up. The laptop I am on is so old it can't handle having 2 screens open at once but I will look it up and post again.


belly.gif1***5****10****15****20****25****30****35heartbeat.gif***40babygirl.gif

 

baileyb is offline  
Old 11-06-2013, 07:26 PM
 
baileyb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 2,323
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)

"Barak was another of those mighty Hebrew warriors who answered the call of God despite overwhelming odds. His name means "lightning."

Once again in the time of the judges, Israel had drifted away from God, and the Canaanites oppressed them for 20 years. God called up Deborah, a wise and holy woman, to be a judge and prophetess over the Jews, the only female among the 12 judges.

Deborah summoned Barak, telling him God had commanded him to gather the tribes of Zebulun and Naphtali and go to Mount Tabor. Barak hesitated, saying he would go only if Deborah went with him. Deborah agreed, but because of Barak's lack of faith in God, she told him credit for the victory would not go to him, but to a woman.

Barak led a force of 10,000 men, but Sisera, commander of King Jabin's Canaanite army, had the advantage, because Sisera had 900 iron chariots. In ancient warfare, chariots were like tanks: swift, intimidating and deadly.

Deborah told Barak to advance because the Lord had gone before him. Barak and his men raced down Mount Tabor. God brought a massive rainstorm. The ground turned to mud, bogging down Sisera's chariots. The stream Kishon overflowed, sweeping many of the Canaanites away. The Bible says Barak and his men pursued. Not one of Israel's enemies was left alive."


belly.gif1***5****10****15****20****25****30****35heartbeat.gif***40babygirl.gif

 

baileyb is offline  
Old 11-07-2013, 10:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
Wildflower's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Posts: 841
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

oooh, thanks for ALL the thought provoking and helpful replies! I can see both sides, and am still on the fence...........You know, middle names just kind of leave me cold in general, nobody hardly ever hears them. I am thinking of this totally obscure middle name I heard once "Dearborne," which would just be a little whisper to the person that you are so dear to us, so happy you were born. I can imagine maybe having Barack  as his real first name, but introducing him as "Rocky" or "Bear" (perfectly average names/nicknames in our little hippy area) and then reserving his full name Barack for wider use when he eventually hits an age where he wants to sound more dignified...probably by then any controversy would have died down...Look at all the little Kennedy's--didn't he sleep with Marilyn or whatever? Plus, beyond politics going this way or that way, I admire him as a good father....Plus Barack just has such a lovely meaning....But yes I do see risks with this choice............

Wildflower is offline  
Old 11-11-2013, 11:45 PM
 
pomegranate79's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: East Coast city
Posts: 96
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)

I love the name Barack - it has a great meaning and people in a lot of cultures have it - and I think it's fair to name the baby after someone you admire. If Obama does something crazy someday, your son may have a good sense of humor and will just joke about it. I can guarantee you that there's going to be thousands of little African-American boys named Barack in the 10-20 years to come - your boy's going to be in good company. 

 

But regardless of what happens, I think it's easily handled by giving him a middle name you love too, so that if he doesn't want everyone to know him as Barack, he can go by his middle name. Even for public purposes he can just go as "B. Dearborne So-and-so" or what have you. It'll sound very distinguished. :)


34 yo mom of boy #1 (Spring 2009), baby #2 is here! (Jan 2014)

 

2nd generation co-sleeper and extended breastfeeder, grateful to my mom for

letting me witness homebirth as a little girl and giving me confidence in my ability to birth normally.

pomegranate79 is offline  
Old 11-12-2013, 05:31 AM
 
LilyTiger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 1,995
Mentioned: 26 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 38 Post(s)

One other thing to consider is that research has shown consistent discrimination against names that sound African American on resumes and other kinds of applications.  It's awful and stupid, but it might be something to consider.  I don't necessarily suggest you base your name choice around what racists do and say, but it's just an added variable to take into consideration.  Hopefully the world will be a different place in 20 years when your baby is grown up, but somehow I doubt it. 


Beautiful baby girl born 8/13/2012. Little star baby lost at 10 weeks pregnant, 12/18/2013. Currently due 12/13/2014 with a rainbow.
LilyTiger is offline  
Old 11-12-2013, 05:57 AM
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Georgia
Posts: 472
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)

When I was trying to come up with names for my kids, I tried to take into consideration how they would feel about it when they are adults. So, I made a list of what me and DH liked, what they may potentially like and be ok with, family names, and Italian and Irish/Gaelic names, as me and DH are Italian and Irish. It worked out well. We stayed clear of any names that may have a negative connotation with them. Honestly, we thought about that specifically when forming the list.

 

As for Barack... what if your child is a libertarian atheist? You know, later in life. He could potentially be very unhappy with his name being Barack. Like, what were my parents thinking?? YOU may like Barack and YOU may be his biggest fan, but will your child be happy with that name? It's a very unique name. The first thing someone will think of will be Barack Obama. Now, twenty years down the road, maybe not, but it's not like it's Bill, John, Ron, or George. My 2cents.gif


Newly married 10/2013 to DH superhero.gifSAHM to DD 2007  dust.gif and DS 2010  bouncy.gif  homeschool.gifselectivevax.gifdelayedvax.gifnocirc.gifhamster.jpg
erinmattsmom88 is offline  
Old 11-12-2013, 07:21 AM
 
lucylucy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 20
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Personally, I wouldn't name my kid after a living political figure.
lucylucy is offline  
Old 11-12-2013, 07:30 AM
 
mamazee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: US midwest
Posts: 7,246
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I know lots of little girls named Reagan and Kennedy. He'd get a weak reception for the name in a conservative area, but then a Reagan would get a weak reception in a liberal area. We'll have to see how popular the name ends up being, but it sounds fine to me, and there are plenty of nicknames if you're worried about calling out for Barack in the playground.
mamazee is offline  
Old 11-15-2013, 07:18 PM
 
pamelaRRRR's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 195
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have an Ike, and know kids named Truman, Roosevelt and Lincoln.

While I'm pretty liberal , I'd hesitate to use a recent presidential name just because there are so many negative people out there right now.

I don't get flak from people about Ike, and my good friend doesn't get it about Truman, but I think it's because the names and legacies have had time to mellow.
pamelaRRRR is offline  
 
User Tag List

Thread Tools


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off