Dolly Parton

Dolly on her gay fans- “They know that I completely love and accept them, as I do all people. I’ve struggled enough in my life to be appreciated and understood. I’ve had to go against all kinds of people through the years just to be myself. I think everybody should be allowed to be who they are, and to love who they love. I don’t think we should be judgmental. Lord, I’ve got enough problems of my own to pass judgment on somebody else.”

Dolly Parton is a gay icon. She has got big hair, big boobs, a big personality and a big heart, especially for her LGBT fans. She has said in interviews that the reason she loves her gay fans is that they accept for who she is and she does the same for them, she is not a judgmental person. She was one of the first country singers to stand up for gay rights at a time when doing that, especially in the world of country music, was not so kosher. Some have even made claims that she is a lesbian and in a secret relationship with her friend Judy Ogle (of which she responds that if she was really a lesbian, she would be running out of the closet). Dolly wears outfits that are over-the-top and full of rhinestones and puts on big wigs, one of the many reasons drag queens love to impersonate her. She even says “It’s a good thing I was born a girl, otherwise I would be a drag queen.”

Dolly Parton, the country singer who was born in the backwoods of the Tennessee Smokey Mountains in the United States, has come a long way since her humble beginnings. Dolly was the fourth of twelve children growing up in a poor household. Music played an important role in her early life, she performed in churches and would eventually begin performing on radio and television. She would eventually move to Nashville and begin writing songs and that is where her career started taking off and since then, it has not showed any signs of slowing down. She has many hit songs including “Jolene” (one of her greatest songs, I think), “9 to 5”, “Islands in the Stream” and “I Will Always Love You” (she sang it way before Whitney Houston did) to name a few. Not only did she conquer the music scene (she has been nominated for 46 Grammys, tying with Beyoncé for the most nominations by a female artist), she also did films as well, like acting the southern drama (and gay favorite) STEEL MAGNOLIAS, 9 TO 5, and RHINESTONE and writing songs for 9 TO 5 and TRANSAMERICA, both of which she was nominated for Academy Awards. She even has her own theme park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee (how many singers have their own theme park?). At 68, she is still doing world tours and acting in films and putting out albums. But after all the success she has had, she has still remained very humble.

Every moment she is on screen or in concert, people are just drawn to her and especially her gay fans. She is like that favorite Aunt some of us have, the one that loves and accepts us when no one else in the family would. She has always continuously supported our community and for that, we will always love her.

by Russell Boaz

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