“When our founder Miley Cyrus and her fairy godmother Dolly Parton wrote these words together, they meant it.”
Miley Cyrus’ Happy Hippie Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting LGBTQ+ and homeless youth, is donating in honor of the students at Heyer Elementary School.
Earlier this month, a group of first-graders were preparing for their school concert in Waukesha, Wisconsin. However, when their music teacher asked Principal Mark Schneider for permission to sing Miley Cyrus and Dolly Parton’s “Rainbowland,” their request was denied. According to a statement made by Waukesha school district Superintendent James Sebert, “the question was around whether the song was appropriate for the age and maturity level of the first-grade students.”
“Rainbowland” is a track on Cyrus’ 2017 album, Younger Now, with lyrics that embrace a world where everyone can live happily without judgment.
“Wouldn’t it be nice to live in paradise/Where we’re free to be exactly who we are/Let’s all dig down deep inside/Brush the judgment and fear aside/Make wrong things right/And end the fight/’Cause I promise ain’t nobody gonna win (come on).”
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Cyrus’ Happy Hippies Foundation Responds to Ban
Though Cyrus and Parton have not issued a personal statement about the ban, Cyrus’ Happy Hippie Foundation did. “To the inspiring first grade students at Heyer Elementary, keep being YOU. We believe in our Happy Hippie heart that you’ll be the ones to brush the judgment and fear aside and make all of us more understanding and accepting,” read a tweet from the organization.
HH made a donation to the Pride and Less Prejudice organization, which provides LGBTQ-inclusive books to Pre-K through 3rd grade classrooms to “help students and teachers ‘Read out loud, read out proud!'”
“We are rainbows, me and you
Every color, every hue
Let’s shine on through… TOGETHER WE CAN START LIVING IN A RAINBOWLAND.”
— Happy Hippie Foundation (@happyhippiefdn) March 29, 2023
If you’re wondering what the young students will be singing for their spring concert, the teacher chose the Muppet’s “Rainbow Connection.”The school administration initially axed the new song but reconsidered it after pushback from families and organizations in Wisconsin. Melissa Tempel, the teacher who initially spoke out about “Rainbowland,” told WPR that the administration gave no reason for banning “Rainbow Connection.”” Ironically, the only connection the songs have is the word “rainbow.”