As a vocal advocate and ally to the LGBTQ+ community, Dolly Parton has made a point to call for inclusivity and acceptance throughout her career. Now, she’s speaking out once again to defend transgender people being targeted by state-level laws.
In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter published on Thursday (Nov. 2), Parton was asked about her reaction to her home state of Tennessee passing a series of anti-trans measures into law earlier this year. While Parton said that she wasn’t interested in talking about “the politics of everything,” she offered that at the end of the day, “I just want everybody to be treated good.”
When looking at the issue of anti-trans legislation, Parton said that “I try to get into the human element of it.” Pointing out that she has people in her life who identify as queer and trans, the 77-year-old star said it was important to hear what they’re saying.
“I know and love them all, and I do not judge. And I just see how broken-hearted they get over certain things and I know how real they are,” she said. “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.”
In March, Tennessee passed a state-wide ban on gender-affirming care for minors, preventing gender-diverse youth from being able to access evidence-based, best practice treatments such as puberty blockers and hormone therapy. Families of transgender children subsequently challenged the new law in court, attempting to block it from taking affect. After the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the law, families have petitioned the Supreme Court to block the ban and hear their case.
Parton is set to release her long-awaited rock album, Rockstar, on Friday, Nov. 17.
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