Y’all: the Most Inclusive of All Pronouns

Growing up in Miami, I dreaded being told that I sounded like a hick. In my teens, a boyfriend pointed out that I tended to say “sow” (as in the female pig) in place of “saw.” But most verbal indicators of my Texas roots fell away in nursery school, after my family moved from Dallas and I took to using the word “toilet” rather than “commode.” The way I began to say “pie” flummoxed my parents. It sounded, to their ears, like “poi.” When my mom joked that I was becoming a Yankee, my father scolded her and taught me “Dixieland.”

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