Why the Singular Use of ‘They’ Was Voted the Word of the Year by the American Dialect Society

I think you should call people what they want to be called

Mary Norris, known as the “Comma Queen” at the New Yorker, addressed the recent and wonderful American Dialect Society announcement that the singular “they” was their Word of the Year and talked about how to use the word as a singular noun.

A lot of people thought that was addressing number problem between singular noun and plural antecedent now but in fact was the American Dialect Society was talking about was the use of they as a singular noun in place of he or she for people who are transgender, who identified variously as agender, androgynm, pangender, genderfluid, genderqueer. If somebody who works in a bagel store he or she comes in late to work and he or she is gender fluid and they arrive at work. What would you say, would you say they is here or they are here? Maybe it’ll all come down to context as most things usually do.