A petition to replace all statues that memorialize Confederate officers in Tennessee with statues of Dolly Parton has almost reached its goal of 15,000 signatures.
The petition was posted to Change.org on June 11 by Alex Parsons, according to the website.
“Tennessee is littered with statues memorializing confederate officers. History should not be forgotten, but we need not glamorize those who do not deserve our praise. Instead, let us honor a true Tennessee hero, Dolly Parton,” the description read.
“Aside from her beautiful music, which has touched the hearts and lives of millions of Americans, Dolly Parton's philanthropic heart has unquestionably changed the world for the better,” the description continued.
The petition cites the economical and philanthropic impacts Parton has had in the state as well as across the United States.
“From the Dollywood foundation that has provided books and scholarships to millions of American children, to the millions of dollars she has donated to dozens of organizations such as the Red Cross and COVID-19 research centers, Dolly Parton has given more to this country and this state than those confederate officers could ever have hoped to take away,” the petition states.
Parton is one of the most honored and revered female country singer-songwriters of all time. Achieving 25 RIAA-certified gold, platinum, and multi-platinum awards, she has had 26 songs reach #1 on the Billboard country charts, a record for a female artist.
She recently won a Lifetime Achievement Award and was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1999.
Parton has donated over 130 million books to children around the world with her Imagination Library. Her children's book, “Coat of Many Colors,” was dedicated to the Library of Congress to honor the Imagination Library's 100 millionth book donation.
“Let's replace the statues of men who sought to tear this country apart with a monument to the woman who has worked her entire life to bring us closer together,” the Change.org petition concluded.
The deaths of George Floyd in Minneapolis and Rayshard Brooks in Atlanta in the span of less than three weeks have led to a push in the U.S. for more training of police officers in how to “de-escalate” tense situations before they explode in violence.
The nationwide protests in the name of Floyd have sparked growing calls to remove Confederate statues, and some protesters have torn down statues themselves.At the U.S. Capitol there are about 11 statues of soldiers or officials who have served in the Confederacy. On June 11, lawmakers introduced a bill that would remove them. It's a call to action happening across the country.
It's resonating not only with government officials, but with music stars, sports organizations and even children's TV shows.A statue of Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederacy, was toppled by a group of protesters in Richmond, Virginia on June 10. It's the second statue to come down in Richmond in just two days.
NASCAR, the Navy and Marine Corps have all opted for any images of the Confederate flag to be removed from their establishments as well.
The Associated Press and FOX 5 DC contributed to this report.