Parents in Argentina have been prohibited by the powers that be from naming their babies after one of the country’s most famous sons.
Banning a name is an unusual step for a country to take and some might say tyrannical.
Yet the Argentinean authorities swear they’re not being bureaucratic bullies but simply providing the only solution to what they see as a potential crisis.
If you haven’t guessed already, the name on the banned list is Messi.
Ever since Lionel Messi shot to global stardom through his sublime soccer skills, naming your child after the Barcelona star seems to be the thing to do in Argentina, especially in Messi’s home city of Rosario.
However, Spanish newspaper Marca has reported that the director of the Civil Register of the Santa Fe province, Gonzalo Carrillo, has said that Messi is now not permitted as a forename.
It’s not clear how the authorities plan to enforce the new ruling. Will they imprison any parents who dare to name their child after Messi or perhaps the state will rename the baby with a name they feel is much more appropriate, like Diego for instance.
Either way, the paper made it clear that it is now “against the law” for anyone to name their child Messi.
The new law was enforced after a man named Hector Varela from Rio Nergo in the south of Argentina went to war with the authorities and fought for the right to name his son Messi Daniel Varela.
“I am Messi’s father. Many people chose Lionel as a name for their sons after Messi, but this is more obvious,” explained Hector.
Hector’s son has now been successfully registered as Messi Daniel Varela but the powers that be have decreed there won’t be any more ‘little Lionels’ if they’ve got any say in it.
Scared that the situation was getting out of control and in danger of becoming somewhat messy, a tenacious and dedicated civil servant moved quickly to prevent any more proud parents from following in Hector’s footsteps.
Anyone now, who wishes to battle with the authorities to call their child Messi, won’t be able to do so because it is illegal.
Although it is still ok to name your pet after the skillful soccer star. Earlier this year a survey revealed that over 700 cats and dogs in the Rosario region were called Messi.
What do you think about the whole messy saga? If celebrities can give their babies ludicrous names, shouldn’t your average Joe be allowed to name their child after someone who has helped put their country on the map? Or are the authorities right to have taken such drastic measures?