Dolly Parton has issued a rare political statement voicing her support for the Black Lives Matter movement.
In an interview with Billboard magazine, published on Thursday, the country music icon, 74, said she appreciated the millions of Americans taking to the streets to protest for racial reform following the death of black man George Floyd.
‘I understand people having to make themselves known and felt and seen,’ she stated.
‘And of course Black lives matter. Do we think our little white a**es are the only ones that matter? No!’
Throughout her five-decade career, Parton has been largely apolitical – often refusing to giver her opinion on various politicians and policies.
Dolly Parton has issued a rare political statement voicing her support for the Black Lives Matter movement. The 74-year-old is pictured late last year
Black Lives Matter protesters have been taking to the streets across America since late May, calling for a reckoning on racism. New York City demonstrators are pictured last week
During her discussion with Billboard, Parton discussed why she so rarely weighs in on political happenings – unlike a large majority of her Hollywood contemporaries.
‘I’m not a judgmental person. I do believe we all have a right to be exactly who we are, and it is not my place to judge,’ she stated.
‘God is the judge, not us. I just try to be myself. I try to let everybody else be themselves.’
Parton’s support for the Black Lives Matter movement divided the internet, with some expressing disappointment that she broke her tradition of remaining tight-lipped.
Republican congressional candidate DeAnna Lorraine tweeted: ‘Dolly Parton just said she supports Black Lives Matter. My hear is literally broken. Guess it’s time to #BoycottDolly’.
Another outraged fan wrote: ‘Guess I’ll be Parton ways with Dolly’.
However, others were thrilled by the country music queen’s announcement, with star Chery Lloyd writing: ‘Just when you think you couldn’t love Dolly Parton more… she gives you another reason.’
Parton’s support for Black Lives Matter divided fans on social media
Elsewhere in her Billboard interview, Parton discussed how she renamed her Dixie Stampede dinner theater in Tennessee back in 2018, after learning that ‘Dixie’ was offensive to some in the south.
‘There’s such a thing as innocent ignorance, and so many of us are guilty of that,’ Parton proclaimed.
‘When they said ‘Dixie’ was an offensive word, I thought, “Well, I don’t want to offend anybody. This is a business. We’ll just call it The Stampede.”
‘As soon as you realize that [something] is a problem, you should fix it. Don’t be a dumba**.
‘That’s where my heart is. I would never dream of hurting anybody on purpose’.
‘I would never dream of hurting anybody on purpose’: Parton also spoke out about renaming her famous dinner theater in Tennessee
The only political issue Parton has been outspoken about is her support for the LGBT movement.
Back in 2018, she told the Australian Broadcasting Agency that she believe the country should allow gay marriage.
‘Hey, I think love is love and we have no control over that … I think people should be allowed to marry.
‘Im not God, you know. I believe in God, I think God is the judge. I don’t judge or criticize and I don’t think we’re supposed to,’ she added.
Earlier this month, Parton appeared vida video link at the 31st GLAAD Awards where she accepted a prize for her Netflix show, Heartstrings.
However, she has largely restrained from weighing in on other issues and politicians.
Back in 2017, Parton famously refused to partake in jabs against President Donald Trump when she appeared with her 9 To 5 co-stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin at the Emmy Awards.
Back in 2017, Parton (center) famously refused to partake in jabs against President Donald Trump when she appeared with her 9 To 5 co-stars Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin at the Emmy Awards. Tomlin and Fonda have been outspoken critics of the Commander-in-chief
Parton has long been an outspoken advocate for the LGBTQ movement, and recently appeared at the 31st GLAAD Awards where she accepted a prize for her Netflix show, Heartstrings
She later told The Guardian: ‘I’ve got as many Republican friends as I’ve got Democrat friends and I just don’t like voicing my opinion on things.
‘I respect my audience too much for that, I respect myself too much for that. Of course I have my own opinions, but that don’t mean I got to throw them out there because you’re going to piss off half the people.’
Parton has not attended publicly donated to any prominent Democrat or Republican fundraisers, and is rarely seen in Washington, D.C.
However, she was awarded a Kennedy Center Honors award back in 2006, which she received at the US State Department.
Parton (center) was awarded a Kennedy Center Honors award back in 2006, which she received at the US State Department