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Dolly Parton Addresses Transgender Rights in Tennessee: ‘We Are All God’s Children’

By Taylor Henderson,

2023-11-02

Dolly Parton Addresses Transgender Rights in Tennessee: ‘We Are All God’s Children’

'I try not to get into the politics of everything. I try to get into the human element of it,' said the country icon, reflecting on a law that prohibits gender-affirming medical care for transgender people under the age of 18

Published | Updated Taylor Henderson
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Dolly Parton has weighed in transgender rights after the passing of a new law in Tennessee. Ian Gavan/Getty Images

Country icon and Tennessee native Dolly Parton reflected on transgender rights in her home state in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter .

"Well, what I always say, 'I just want everybody to be treated good,'" she began. "I try not to get into the politics of everything. I try to get into the human element of it."

Parton then shared that she has "some of everybody in my own immediate family and in my circle of employees. I've got transgender people. I've got gays. I've got lesbians. I've got drunks. I've got drug addicts — all within my own family. I know and love them all, and I do not judge."

The 77-year-old concluded, "I just see how broken-hearted they get over certain things and I know how real they are. I know how important this is to them. That's who they are. They cannot help that any more than I can help being Dolly Parton, you know, the way people know me. If there's something to be judged, that is God's business. But we are all God's children and how we are is who we are."

Tennessee recently passed a law that prohibits gender-affirming medical care for transgender people under the age of 18. On Wednesday, the ACLU called it a "vicious law has already had a disastrous impact in homes and communities across Tennessee" and is seeking to appeal the case with the Supreme Court.

In the same feature, pop star Taylor Swift spoke at length about Parton's compassion and spirit.

"Dolly is a force of evolution and transformation in our industry, but she does it with such playful levity it almost looks effortless," said the "Cruel Summer" singer. "Her sense of humor and mischief are easily my favorite things about her, because I think it forces the world to reconcile that a woman can be a serious artist and writer who also has raucous fun with it, can make people laugh and be in on every joke."

Swift concluded, "She's never stopped challenging herself to clear new hurdles and explore new territory artistically, and I think that speaks to her great curiosity about the human condition. She's a legendary empath and the storyteller for the ages. She's also having the most fun doing it."

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