I was disturbed by Laura Cox’s Reuters article about British soccer star Wayne Rooney, whose happy Tweets about brand new baby, Klay Anthony Rooney, were attacked by Twitter Trolls who badmouthed the baby’s name and even what he looked like.
If you want the lurid details you can read the original article, but suffice it to say their comments were rude and crude and could be fairly described as “personal attacks.”
Most articles about birth announcements either gush over the names or critique them, but this one helped me imagine how critical comments might come across to the parents. I write about celebrity baby names too; my blog is tweeted out on the internet. I get news “feeds” through Twitter, just like those British “Twitter trolls.” And I’m rarely impressed by celebrity baby names, many of of which come across to me as “self-indulgent publicity stunts,” like the names Kanye West and Kim Kardashian have been “leaking” on evening TV talk shows.
But the Rooney article reports that Klay* was named after Muhammad Ali whose birth name was Cassius Clay, that Klay’s older brother was named Kai and the Rooney’s were going with one-syllable “K”-names for both brothers (so they can remember their kids’names when their short-term memory starts to go).
There’s nothing awful or egregious about the names Wayne and Colleen Rooney picked for their two sons. In fact, I think the Rooney boys lucked out. But reading the article helped me empathize with past victims of overly harsh critical comments I’ve written over the years.
My main purpose in writing about celebrity baby names is to turn celebrity birth announcements into “teachable moments” for expecting parents who are likely to read almost anything written about “baby names in the news” (which is also the name of my blog). Of course if you’re a celebrity who gives your baby a “what-were-they-thinking?” name (like Apple, Blue Ivy, or Peaches Honeyblossom) you’re not going to be too happy about my cricial comments, if you happen to read them.
Anyway, I’m feeling contrite and hope y’all don’t perceive me as a rude and crude internet troll. So to make up for any names I may have “greeted” with overly harsh comments, I’m giving Wayne and Colleen Rooney 2 thumbs up for sibling names Klay and Kai.
*I wonder if Rooney is aware of what an amazing star Klay Thompson of the NBA (Golden State Warriors) has become.