But, as with the generations-long fictitious feud between the Montagues and the Capulets, a name has the ability to be deeply divisive, inciteful even, if it manages to offend or strike emotive chords.
The renaming of Cape Town International Airport has struck many such a chord, becoming a powder keg that threatens to tear asunder the threadbare fabric of the Mother City’s unity. Already at the recent public meeting to discuss and submit possible names, rival groups nigh came to blows as they tried to have their names heard louder and clearer than the others.
Winnie Madikizela-Mandela International, Robert Sobukwe International, Steve Biko International, Krotoa International - just some of the names now submitted to the South African Geographical Naming Council for a thorough check, before the list is then handed to Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa to be gazetted. Thereafter, there is another 30-day period for public opposition and comment, so there’s still time to agree or disagree with whatever names get put forward.