August 14th, 2013
01:19 PM ET

Judge Orders Parents to Rename Son

A Tennessee judge has ordered a mother to change her son's name from Messiah to Martin.

The judge's reasons that the name is only reserved for one.

“The word ‘Messiah’ is a title and it's a title that has only been earned by one person and that one person is Jesus Christ,” she says.

The little boy's mother, Jaleesa Martin, says she wound up in court initially for child support. She and the child’s father have different surnames and couldn’t agree on their son’s surname.

The judge instead “came out and said I'm going to change his first name,’ because she didn't like it,” Martin says.

“She gave us a recess and told us she was going to give us an hour to pick another name for Messiah and if we didn't, she was going to give him the name that she wanted him to have, which was Martin.”

The judge decided to name the boy Martin Deshawn McCalla.

HIs mom is now fighting for the right to call her son Messiah.

If she wins, she says she’d tell the judge, “I'm sorry that you have your own beliefs, but you have no right to change my child's name.”

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soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Chris

    "II disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" – Evelyn Beatrice Hall

    August 23, 2013 at 2:27 pm | Reply
  2. briley

    Time for this JUDGE to get his head out of the GOOD BOOK and hit the law books (NOT) that's Tennessee it's calling your name. Horrible state of affairs even for the GOOD ole boys.

    August 21, 2013 at 11:42 pm | Reply
  3. briley

    Time for this judge to go . Only in tennessee

    August 21, 2013 at 11:38 pm | Reply
  4. Randy

    Will she make the Tenn symphony change the name of Handel's "Messiah" when they play it, or just ban it all together?

    August 21, 2013 at 7:33 pm | Reply
  5. Angie

    Shame on u judge u need to hang up your robe after u loss this case. I pray u learn from your mistakes cause this was one. U HAD NO RIGHT!!!!

    August 21, 2013 at 11:19 am | Reply
  6. Sane

    Man, our mental health support system is becoming really bad.. some of these folks who need this support system are becoming judges of late..

    August 20, 2013 at 3:30 pm | Reply
  7. j f

    This is America, land of freedom. The judge should have the freedom to exercise his/her right to early retirement soon after this abuse of power.

    August 20, 2013 at 8:59 am | Reply
  8. Kerry

    I think the judge is right on this, but he will lose, not really sure if the court can force a parent to name a child. Now don't get me wrong, this mother has real issues, and needs to grow up, she is really looking silly. These names we give our children are going to be stuck with them, and as for the name in question, well let's say that is not a name (Messiah) i wish to play with.

    August 19, 2013 at 11:42 am | Reply
    • Angie

      Kerry u sound silly...this judge clearly was wrong and took advantage of her power.. Shame on u to believe she was right. If the shoes was only on the other foot no matter the case my be would u think its ok to take your rights away. And Messiah is a beautiful name, she never did say he was Jesus. I guess all the Mary's need to chanege their names to...ijs

      August 21, 2013 at 11:16 am | Reply

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