Given the laundry list of ills that liberalism has spawned in this world the popular trend of double or hyphenated last names may seem quite trivial by comparison but I bring it up because not only is it a particular pet peeve of mine but it provides valuable insights into how the liberal mind works. Here’s a small sample of what I’m talking about:
Alison Lundergan Grimes
Hillary Rodham Clinton
Teresa Heinz Kerry
Sheila Jackson Lee
What exactly is the purpose of subjecting us all to these overly cumbersome names, pray tell? Oh, I’m aware of the stated reasons that we’re given for our inconvenience: Professional women want to be sure they’re still recognized after they’re married; or: they don’t want to lose their bond to their family name.
Sorry I don’t buy it. A young Margaret Roberts ran for political office twice before marrying and changing her last name to Thatcher. The name change does not seem to have harmed her career any. Elizabeth Hanford worked for several presidential administrations and was Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission when she married Bob Dole and became Elizabeth Dole. Her prior accomplishments were not forgotten and people managed to figure out who she was while she continued to have a highly esteemed career. Does anyone care that Michelle Obama’s maiden name is Robinson? Was taking her husband’s name an affront to her family crest? No, it changes nothing.
I concede that I made up my mind prior to ever being married that I would keep my maiden name if (a) my husband’s name was something disturbing or comical, like Hitler or Weiner (my apologies to the Hitlers and Weiners out there); or (b) if his last name rhymed with my first name (I could never be Debbie Webby, just as an example), but that’s just a practical matter. I have to be able to say my own name without cringing or laughing, don’t I? In that case, though, I would keep just one name. I also understand there may be women who re-marry and choose to keep the surname of their children along with their new name, but that’s not the case in most of my examples above. So again I ask, what is the point?
I believe the point is to steer people into making assumptions about you based upon your name rather than letting your actions and accomplishments speak for themselves. It’s a manipulation, albeit a small one, and it goes to the heart of the way liberals tend to think, placing appearances above substance. “Look at me. I buck tradition, therefore I am more free-thinking and independent than you.” That’s what the point is, and that’s why I think it’s worth writing a post about. I resent the fact that these women might be assumed to possess qualities that are superior to those of us who choose to give up our maiden names and adopt our husbands’ names when one has absolutely no bearing on the other. Carly Fiorina was moving up the corporate ladder when she married and took the surname of her second husband. Does anyone seriously question her independence or her belief in her own right to thrive as a woman in this world?
On top of all that I’m just plain tired of saying and typing ‘Wasserman Schultz,’ et al. It’s tedious; which brings me to the second half of this complaint. More and more we’re bombarded with the growing trend for hyphenated names, as any football fan has no doubt observed. Here’s a sampling:
I can only assume that this latest trend in name patch-working is the consequence of the destruction of the traditional family unit engineered by the Left over the past many decades. It’s a wonder to me that the makers of sports uniforms haven’t gone on strike in protest over the needless complexity of having to cram two names onto a jersey now instead of just one. What’s next? Shall we wrap the names all the way around the jersey? What about twenty years from now when the daughter of Jones-Drew marries the son of Rodgers-Cromartie? Will their children be signing Rodgers-Cromartie-Jones-Drew to their second grade homework assignments? To what lengths, literally speaking, will we go to accommodate this silliness?
Looking into the future I can foresee the day when a young Ms. Sims-Walker-Wasserman-Schultz suddenly announces that she has a brilliant idea for simplifying things and proposes that we all choose just one family name.
Gee, why didn’t we think of that?