Tae- to kick or destroy with the foot
Kwon- to punch with the fist
Do- art or way of the
In 1945 when Korea was liberated many seperate marital arts schools formed. General Choi Hong Hi (considered the father of Tae Kwon Do) started his own teaching a combination of Taekyon and Karate (Thus explaining TKD's similiarity to Karate). Many other schools taught this style but called it various names until 1955 when Choi Hong Hi submitted the name Tae Kwon Do. Tae Kwon Do encompasses many different styles of martial arts and is the most popular Korean martial art and even their national sport.
BTW, I'm a 3rd degree black belt and a Tae Kwon Do instructor, so while my knowledge of the history may be a little off, I know enough to say that anyone who says Tae Kwon Do is worthless is obviously a retarded douche bag. Also, I'm 17 and make $6.50 and hour, so I'm clearly not teaching TKD to "leech all your money away"