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Name's positive message

If the names of our children reflect anything about the state of our culture, then the latest list of the most popular names for babies contains a positive message about Scotland.

The list reveals the top name for babies born in Glasgow last year was Mohammad, although its popularity does not reflect the fact many men use it as an honorific and choose to be known by their second name.

However, the fact that Mohammad, in all its variants and uses, was the most popular for babies last year will come as no surprise to Glaswegians as their city, and particularly the south side, has been home to Scottish Asians for at least four generations.

This has not been without its problems, and we should not for a minute assume that racism is not an issue, but in many ways Scotland is a multicultural society and has managed immigration well.

Indeed, Scotland will need more immigration if it is to tackle the imbalance between old and young and the Mohammads born last year, and next, will play their part in that. Theirs is a name that reflects their proud ethnic origin, but it also signals their membership of a wider, changing, multicultural community.

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