Country music legend Dolly Parton has asked Tennessee lawmakers to withdraw a bill to erect a statue in her honour on Capitol grounds in Nashville.
“Given all that is going on in the world, I don’t think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time,” Parton said in a statement on twitter.
In January, state Rep. John Mark Windle, a Democrat, introduced a bill to create a statue in Nashville to honour the 75-year-old Tennessee native “for all that she has contributed to this state”.
The statue was to be financed by gifts, grants and donations.
In 2016, the singer’s Dollywood Foundation donated $1,000 a month to families that were impacted by the Tennessee wildfires. The payments went out for a total of six months. Earlier this year, she donated $1 million to Vanderbilt University to fund the development of Moderna coronavirus vaccine.
Parton founded the Imagination Library, which mails books to children under the age of five across the world to improve child literacy. Her advocacy for racial justice was recently celebrated in a mural in Nashville.
In pushing the bill, Windle said: “At this point in history, is there a better example, not just in America but in the world, of a leader that is [a] kind, decent, passionate human being? [She’s] a passionate person who loves everyone, and everyone loves her.”
Parton thanked the legislature for their consideration of the bill and said she was honoured and humbled by their intentions.
She added: “I hope, though, that somewhere down the road several years from now or perhaps after I’m gone if you still feel I deserve it, then I’m certain I will stand proud in our great State Capitol as a grateful Tennessean.”