July 29, 2009

Sweden rejects ‘Michael’ as girl’s name

The Swedish Tax agency has denied a family's request to have their newborn daughter named Michael after late pop star Michael Jackson.

The agency, which is charged with approving names, said it rejected the tribute to the King of Pop because it considers giving well-established boy names to girls to be inappropriate, Swedish news agency Tidningarnas Telegrambyra reported Wednesday.

The parents, who live in Tjorn, Sweden, said they were surprised by the ruling because they only wanted Michael to be one of the girls' middle names.

It seems ridiculous and we've spoken with a friend in the United States who said that Michael is a unisex name, the mother said.

The family said they are considering an appeal.

A database maintained by Statistics Sweden lists 38 women in the country bearing the name Michael, including two who have the moniker as their first names.