Barack Obama Regrets Overlooking Dolly Parton For This Huge Honor

Following the release of his third memoir, A Promised Land, former President Barack Obama has been making the media rounds discussing all the secret truths of his years in office. The 44th President of the United States let Americans in on how his job affected his marriage, the one thing Michelle Obama refused to be seen wearing as first lady, and even his time coaching his daughter's basketball team. President Obama has also admitted one of his big mistakes leading the country — and it has to do with country legend Dolly Parton. Barack's blunder came to light during an interview with late night host Stephen Colbert.

Colbert asked Obama to reflect on his post-White House perspective. "Did you miss you?" Colbert quipped. "Did you ever look at something going on in the news and go, 'You know what this situation needs? A little Barack Obama.'" The former president responded with a laugh, admitting he does not miss wearing a tie (or the presidency that much). The situation that could have used "a little Barack Obama," in Colbert's opinion, involves giving Parton the recognition she deserves.

Parton recently gave America (maybe even the world), the ultimate Christmas gift in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. News broke that Parton is partially responsible for the creation of a COVID-19 vaccine, thanks to her big donation earlier in 2020.

Could Dolly Parton get a Presidential Medal of Freedom?

The living legend that is Dolly Parton is as well known for her philanthropy as she is for her legendary singing and songwriting. Considering she also played an essential role in helping save us all from the misery of the coronavirus, comedian and late-night host Stephen Colbert had a critical question for former President Barack Obama. "How does Dolly Parton not have a Presidential Medal of Freedom?" he quipped.

In an interview between Colbert and the 44th president, Obama admitted that not bestowing that honor on Parton was definitely a  "screw-up." President Obama told Colbert, "That's a mistake — I'm shocked ... I think I assumed that she had already got one, and that was incorrect."

Incorrect, indeed. However, Parton receiving a Presidential Medal of Freedom is not a lost cause. Obama is apparently willing to flex his former presidential power and tap into his friendship with President-Elect Joe Biden, telling Colbert, "She deserves one. I'll call Biden."

In Biden's first 100 days of his presidency, Americans are hopeful the president-elect will make positive headway on the pandemic, the economy, climate change, and now, getting Dolly Parton her well-deserved Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Here's why Dolly Parton is Medal of Freedom-worthy

Until Joe Biden gets the call from Barack Obama on this Medal of Freedom-must, it's worth noting all the reasons why Dolly Parton does deserve such an award. Parton, of course, has been a "leading light" for women in country music for decades, per Taste of Country, but she's also been much more. Parton's philanthropy work is almost as legendary as the big-haired country star herself. 

According to The Boot, she worked for years on improving literacy and education worldwide through her book-giving program, Imagination Library. She's donated to multiple charities, including $1 million to Vanderbilt University Children's Hospital in Nashville, and has participated in the Make-a-Wish program. In terms of supporting our furry friends, she received an award from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in connection with Dollywood's bald eagle sanctuary. Yup, Dolly Parton takes care of eagles. She's done a lot of charity work, even before amazingly lending a helping hand to the coronavirus vaccine research efforts.

Parton is also revolutionarily outspoken for a country music star, telling Billboard in 2020 that she's an unequivocal supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement. "I understand people having to make themselves known and felt and seen. And of course Black lives matter," she told the outlet. "Do we think our little white asses are the only ones that matter? No!" 

Come on, is there any figure in music as deserving?

Dolly Parton would not be the first musician awarded

Dolly Parton would be far from the first musician to receive the country's highest civilian honor. 

Music fans may recall that in 2012, another legend, Bob Dylan, was awarded the Medal of Freedom by Barack Obama. "There is not a bigger giant in the history of American music," President Obama said of Dylan at the ceremony, per Rolling Stone, adding that the "unique gravel-y power" of his voice helped redefine "not just what music sounded like, but the message it carried and how it made people feel." In a statement announcing Dylan's award, the White House said the singer-songwriter had "considerable influence on the civil rights movement of the 1960s and has had [a] significant impact on American culture over the past five decades." Sounds a bit like what Parton has done in the country music realm, no?

It makes sense that Obama might feel slightly guilty for overlooking Parton. He also awarded the Medal of Freedom to other music legends, including cellist Yo-Yo Ma, the one and only Stevie Wonder, and to Bill Clinton, who's not a professional musician, but is a saxophonist. Let's just say that Dolly Parton would be in good company.