It’s impossible to deny that quite a few people were miffed to hear that Elon Musk was named by Time as “Person of the Year” for 2021. Each year, the publication chooses a person or group that “most shaped the previous 12 months, for better or for worse.” While some people just wanted to complain that a rich white man managed to get the accolade, a large portion of the internet decided to be more proactive and suggest a replacement.
It’s no secret that Dolly Parton is one of the most beloved country music stars alive. There aren’t many other artists who could record the same song twice and have it hit number one on the charts both times, after all! However, her musical talents are only one part of why fans love her and think she deserves to be “Person of the Year,” however.
It’s not just a rumor online if USA Today is to be believed: Dolly Parton did donate over one million dollars towards what eventually became the Moderna vaccine for COVID-19. One of the doctors involved in the project, Dr. Naji Abumrad, even said, “Without a doubt in my mind, her funding made the research toward the vaccine go 10 times faster than it would be without it.”
She also encouraged others to donate to the cause on social media and helped promote vaccine efforts by showing herself getting a shot of the very same vaccine she helped fund.
Another reason that people like those above may have thought she deserves the Time given title is because of just how extremely humble she is as a person. When Tennesee offered to erect a statue of her in her honor, she actually publically turned the state down.
“Given all that is going on in the world, I don’t think putting me on a pedestal is appropriate at this time.” she said in an Instagram post. 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’ll stand proud in our great State Capitol as a grateful Tennessean.”
Of course, she’s also worked hard to help provide for many less fortunate than herself throughout the years, as one user pointed out. Not only did she found the Imagination Library, which helps give books to countless children in need, over 154 million books in fact, but she even gave Tennessee residents money from her own pocket after wildfires raged through the state back in 2016.
Hart Hanson, known best for creating the famous TV success known as Bones, outright said that it was a mistake that Dolly Parton wasn’t on the cover of Time.
So while it may not be official and from a fancy magazine, it looks like the people themselves say that Dolly Parton is the true “Person of the Year.”