Dolly Parton has been public in her support for the LGBT community for a while now, and she reiterated those views in an interview with The Daily Mail, out today:
[Parton's husband Carl] Dean’s invisibility has prompted repeated speculation – always denied – that Dolly is actually in a lesbian relationship with her childhood friend Judy Ogle, who accompanies her everywhere and is in the studio, sitting quietly on her own, during our conversation.
In her autobiography, My Life And Other Unfinished Business, Parton wrote: ‘Most people can’t understand two women being so close and devoted to each other.
‘We’ve never been lovers, just good old pure sweet fun-loving friends.’
She has also said that, were she gay, she’d be privileged to have Judy as her partner.
Today, she tells me: ‘I didn’t know any gay people in my childhood.
‘I do have a lot of gays in my family now, but some will never come out.’
What if she had fallen in love with a Carla, not a Carl?‘I think everyone should be with who they love,’ she says.‘I don’t want to be controversial or stir up a bunch of trouble but people are going to love who they are going to love.
‘I think gay couples should be allowed to marry. They should suffer just like us heterosexuals. Ha ha ha!’
One of the things that’s always been so powerful about Dolly’s advocacy is that it hasn’t really been advocacy at all. She addresses these subjects with the same humor and nonchalance that comes with her statements on any other subject. Marriage equality? It’s a no brainer in Dolly’s book.