A recent he said, she said true story:
I met a woman on my latest plane-ride who said she was from Shreveport, LA.
I said, "where are you from originally?" (being from DC, where hardly anyone is actually from DC, and noticing that she was void of a southern accent, I figured this was a good question)
She said, "I’ve lived in Shreveport my whole life."
I said, " what happended to your accent?"
She said, "I got rid of it. When I went to college in Portland, I realized that my accent lowered my IQ a hundred points in the eyes of others. So, I got rid of it. It’s been a blessing."
I think some southern accents are charming, others are a little hill billy. I think it depends upon the grammar.