The city of Fort Wayne, Indiana is channeling their inner Beavis and Butthead, and it’s drawing national attention. When it came to naming a new government center, the city opened up online voting to the people to suggest a new name for the building.
Guess which name has garnered the most votes? That’s right: Harry Baals.
So, who is this guy? Keep reading for more details about Harry Baals!
Possibly the most unfortunate name ever bestowed upon a man (other than Dick Hertz, maybe), Harry Baals was a former Indiana mayor who won four terms from the 1930s to the 1950s. In case you’re wondering, Baals was pronounced “balls,” there wasn’t a silent letter or umlaut to help with that one.
Predictably, fans of naming the center Harry Baals will probably not get their wish – even though he is leading in online votes. Fort Wayne city officials aren’t as enthusiastic as their town folk about naming the building after the esteemed former mayor with a funny name.
Deputy Mayor Beth Malloy told the Associated Press:
We realize that while Harry Baals was a respected mayor, not everyone outside of Fort Wayne will know that,. We wanted to pick something that would reflect our pride in our community beyond the boundaries of Fort Wayne.
So what do the other members of the Baals clan think about this controversy?
Baals’ great-nephew, Jim Baals, has lived in Fort Wayne his entire life and doesn’t understand the city’s hesitation saying, “I’ve lived with that name for 51 years now and I’ve gotten through it. I think everybody else can, too.”
C’mon, Fort Wayne officials! Have a sense of humor. If you don’t’ name the center Harry Baals, you’ll just get made fun of for being stick in the mud’s.
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