I don’t think singular ‘they’ is any more confusing than anything else. If you had been reading the same article and the writer just said “she” instead of “they,” when they’d already mentioned several females, you’d still be confused. It sounds like a case of the writer being the problem, not the pronoun. Inventing a new non-gendered pronoun would also not solve that situation.

The argument that they is not singular is false. If a customer left a pair of glasses on the desk, I’d say “someone left their glasses here.” If I didn’t know the gender of my cab driver, I’d say “they should be here any minute.” Singular they. It’s not a new thing. It does take effort, though, and people don’t want to try.

I don’t think it’s up to us to decide. I think if people want their pronoun to be “they,” we accept it. That’s what they’re comfortable with. We learn people’s names, and when people get married, we don’t have a problem remembering their new last name. No one calls T-Mobile VoiceStream anymore by accident. When we push back against using “they” as a pronoun, I feel like we are invalidating people, and I would much rather get used to using a singular “they” more often than alienate people.

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Polyamorous, loud laughing unapologetic feminist, rad fatty, and epic sweet tooth.

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