Washington D.C.  Statisticians from the Department of Health working with the Palo Alto-based Rundex Family Foundation released a new study concluding there is a 95% probability that the incidence of the female name “Isis” will probably decrease in the United States. Isis had recently become a fairly popular girls name over the last 3 decades, but it probably won’t be for much longer.

Isis was the Egyptian goddess of motherhood and fertility, known for being an ideal wife and mother. Her name means “seat, throne,” seen in her role as a king-maker. Isis was clever and possessed great magical power. During the Late Period of Egyptian history, a common representation of Isis was bronze statuettes depicting the goddess seated on a throne and nursing the child, Horus . This imagery persisted into the Roman Period as her cult spread out of Egypt and throughout the Roman Empire and has often been linked to that of the Madonna and the Christ Child.

ISIS is also the acronym for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, a terrorist group that recently beheaded two Western journalists and an aid worker on camera. In its self-proclaimed status as a caliphate, it claims religious authority over all Muslims across the world and aims to bring most of the Muslim-inhabited regions of the world under its political control.

A caliphate is an Islamic state. It’s led by a caliph, who is a political and religious leader who is a successor (caliph) to the Islamic prophet Muhammad. His power and authority is absolute.  ISIS is trying to first take control of land throughout the Levant region: Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, Cyprus and part of southern Turkey.

Organizations that also go by the acronym ISIS have been begging the news media to call the Sunni extremist organization something different. The Associated Press has decided to use “Islamic State group” and The New York Times is simply going with “IS.” The U.S. government has increasingly said “ISIL” the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Egypt’s Islamic authority proposed “al-Qaeda Separatists in Iraq and Syria,” or QSIS, and France recently announced it would use the Arabic acronym “Daesh.” ISIS really hates that word though, and  has threatened to cut out the tongue of anyone who uses it.

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