News of the weird

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Five names good, 12 names bad: A court in Dusseldorf has ruled that a woman may not give her baby son 12 forenames. She wanted to call the boy Chenekwahow Migiskau Nikapi-Hun-Nizeo Alessandro Majim Chayara Inti Ernesto Prithibi Kioma Pathar Henrike, but the court ruled that five names are enough for anyone.

Victory for white trash: The publishers Merriam-Webster have agreed to reformat dictionary entries for about 200 "offensive" words in its Collegiate Dictionary. In future, a word's possible offensiveness will be indicated before rather than after the entry. The company has, however, refused either to remove or redefine "nigger", "queer", "kike", "redneck" and "white trash", despite protests.

Sado-bestial-foot-fetishism: Thomas Capriola, 28, was freed on bail in New York on Monday after being charged with selling videotapes of women in high heels trampling on small animals. A spokesman for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said the tapes, with titles such as "Vanessa, Topless Crusher" were a "foot-fetish type of thing".

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