The brilliant phone phreak Joe Engressia (RIP) legally changed his name in NYC to Joybubbles (no last name, just Joybubbles.) So why can't Boomer Matthews change his name to Boomer the Dog? It's really important to him (no joke) as was Joe's strong desire to be Joybubbles. Who does this hurt?
The judge who turned down Boomer's request own had a specious argument -- the name change would constitute a threat to public safety!
"Consider the following example," Judge Folino wrote, "Petitioner witnesses a serious automobile accident and telephones for an emergency medical response. The dispatcher on the phone queries as to the caller's identity, and the caller responds, 'This is Boomer the Dog'. It is not a stretch to imagine the telephone dispatcher concluding that the call is a prank and refusing to send an emergency medical response."
Of interest to Slashdot readers, Boomer is a brilliant radio engineer, and one of few people who is practiced in the dying art of the precision cutting and grinding of quartz crystals for use in electronic oscillators. He's also a great guy personally if you ever had the good fortune of knowing him.