Southerners are a genteel, welcoming group of folks. Here in the South, we love visitors, and we want you to feel like you belong. Southerners are pleasant and social folks, but that doesn't mean we never get offended. It's not easy to anger a Southerner, but there are a few faux pas you should avoid in conversation with anyone from the South. If your only experience with Southerners is from movies you've seen, then you've got a head full of stereotypes that need addressing. So here are 15 things you should never say to a Southerner.
15. Southern accents make you sound stupid
It should be a given when you're talking to someone not to insult their accent. The truth is, you can be extremely intelligent and educated, no matter what kind accent you have.
14. Sweet tea is gross
Dolly Parton once called sweet tea "the house wine of the south." We're not going to force it down your throat, but maybe find a polite way to decline. Southerners are big on polite. Speaking of which, you should never say...
13. Me first
The South is very much an "after you," kind of place. However, it's also full of stubborn, contrary people. We were gonna let you go first until you said that, and you done messed up now. You can just wait your turn, sweetheart.
12. Hunting is barbaric
Unless you're a vegan, you have no place to talk about hunting. It's probably the most ethical way to eat meat. Did you go out and humanely kill an animal for your bacon this morning? No? You're just a big fat hypocrite then.
11. Southerners are uneducated
Don't go getting all sanctimonious over the Ivy League, now. The South has Duke University, Georgetown, William & Mary, Rice University, and many more prestigious institutions of higher learning.
10. Don't you guys marry your cousins?
The South is not Gone With the Wind. We are just as grossed out by incest as you are. Vomit.
9. No gravy for me, thanks
Oh go on and live a little. Gravy is like the nectar of the gods to Southerners, give it a chance.
8. Trucker hats are tacky
Rudeness is tacky too. It's hot here. We need mesh backs if we're gonna wear ball caps. WE NEED THEM.
7. Why are Southerners so racist?
WOW. Actually, racism is something we should be addressing as a nation. The days when you could pin all American racism on the South are long gone.
6. HAHAHA! You said "y'all"!
What is so funny about that? You want to know what the proper second-person English pronoun is for a group of people? It's "you". Is that how they say it anywhere in the country? No. So I won't make fun of "youins", "yous" and "you guys", and y'all don't make fun of me either.
5. You're probably used to farm animals, huh?
Just like everywhere else, some Southerners grew up on a farm, and some grew up in the city. Farm animals are just as uncommon in the city streets of the South as they are in the city streets where you live.
4. This weather is like an armpit
Don't compare the humidity to an armpit. Just don't. There's not a damn thing we can do to fix it for you, so that sentiment just going to make us uncomfortable.
3. There are so many rednecks here, it's hilarious!
Don't knock the rednecks, they're a hard-working, resourceful bunch. Don't get all high-and-mighty about it either. Bumpkins come in all shapes and sizes from all cultures. You have them too, they probably just don't have a comedy tour devoted to them.
2. Southern girls are just a bunch of rich daddy's girls
Uh, no, actually, we're not. We have some, yes, but most people are not fortunate enough to have wealthy parents. We're just normal people who were raised right. Don't assume our good upbringing came out of a bank account.
1. I'm really not a people person
The South is not for you, then. Here in the South we enjoy visitin' and shootin' the breeze and will take any excuse to turn any event into a social affair. So... sorry, not sorry.
This post was originally published on October 26, 2017.