Dolly Parton Sounds Off on LGBTQ Fan Base: ‘I Completely Love and Accept Them’
With her outrageous style and self-described "white trash" upbringing, Dolly Parton knows a thing or two about turning heads and being different. The country legend and her brand have a large following within the LGBTQ community, which Parton says she wholeheartedly embraces.
"I completely love and accept them, as I do all people," she tells Billboard. "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."
And the songstress has some strong -- but wise -- words for those who judge or look down on others, whether it's her, her fans or anyone else, for whatever reason.
"If people want to pass judgment, they're already sinning," Parton says. "The sin of judging is just as bad as any other sin they might say somebody else is committing. I try to love everybody."
Parton's says her ability to connect so well with fans is due to the judgement she's faced and her many life experiences, both good and bad.
"I've lived a lot and I've done a lot. I've been around so long that I think people just kind of feel like I'm a member of their family -- like a favorite aunt or an older sister," she says. "People relate to me because I grew up poor and in a big family. They know I understand all the hardships."
It also helps that she's not afraid to speak her mind and stand up for herself.
"I'm open and I'm honest. I don't dillydally. If there's something going on, I just say it," Parton says. "I've often said I don't lose my temper as much as I use it ... I love peace and harmony, but when you step in my territory, I will call you on it.
"People say, 'Oh, you just always seem so happy.' Well, that's the Botox."