Parents, consider son’s name

By From page A6 | April 23, 2013

The Boston Marathon bombings seem to have been carried out by two Chechen brothers, the older Tamerlan, age 26, has died as a result of a gun fight with police.

I have heard that the younger brother always obeyed the older, so Tamerlan may have been making the decisions.

I don’t want to blame the grieving parents, or anyone but the men who committed the crime, but for future reference, naming your son after Tamerlane, a man who killed a larger portion of the world’s population living at his time than Hitler, may not be a good idea.

I would also suggest that parents follow Johnny Cash’s sage advice and avoid naming their sons Sue.

There is a story, probably apocryphal, about how Tamerlane got his start. In his tribe they were trying to pick a leader, and chose to give leadership to the winner of a foot race, like the Marathon, but much shorter. First one to a pole won.

Tamerlane, being lame, could not hope to win so he threw his hat, which landed on the pole. The elders gave leadership to Tamerlane, saying the others got there first with their feet, but he got their first with his head.

The name Tamerlane, by the way, means Timur the lame.

Did this story of putting something unorthodox, a hat, at the finish line of a foot race suggest the idea of putting something else unorthodox, a bomb, at the finish line of another foot race, the Boston Marathon?

Who knows? Nevertheless, let me paraphrase Cash: Parents if you have a son, name him Bill or George, something other than Hitler, Attila, Tamerlane or Sue.

Richard Bruce

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