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Would Macedonia by any other name sound so . . . controversial?

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Key chains of every member nation are sold at the United Nations gift shop, including one's for "TFYR Macedonia," The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (second from right). Hanaa Shoukry, the gift shop's purchaser, said that recently she was asked to replace two signs marking gifts from "Macedonia" because of complaints. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)


Panos Spiliakos, the Supreme President of the Pan-Macedonia Association, in his parked Chevy on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)


Macedonian Ambassador to the United Nations, Igor Dzundev, said, "We feel discriminated against because we are not allowed to be a member state there with the constitutional name [Republic of Macedonia]." (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)


Flags of the "TFYR Macedonia," or the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia were on sale at the UN gift shop, albeit somewhat hidden. (Amanda Rivkin/CNS)

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Macedonia. Should it be called the Republic of Macedonia or the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Now 16 state legislatures in the U.S. have seen fit to weigh in on the issue. What do state legislators know about this international exercise in name-calling? Very little, it turns out. And why should they care?