Carol Channing: Gays May Not Be a Girl’s Best Friend

CarolchanningComments by 85-year-old Carol Channing sent ripples through the Hello Dolly-loving subset of the gay community over the weekend after a new interview was published that revealed she may not be as gay-friendly as she is perceived.

In an interview (which she did not at first realize was with a gay publication) with the Gay People’s Chronicle, the elderly Broadway chanteuse spoke candidly about her relationship with her gay fanbase:

“I don’t think about them. I’m grateful that they seem to like me. They’re terribly loyal to me. But I’m knee-deep in the Bible and you know what it says about that.”

After she realized she was talking to a gay publication, she was asked what she thought about the battle for gay rights.

Said Channing: “I don’t think about it. If they can’t take care of their own problems, why should I bother. It’s not my problem.”

You Know What the Bible Says [gay people’s chronicle]


  1. mark m says

    Of course she’s knee deep in the Bible. She’s 85 and she’s trying to book a first class ticket to Heaven.

    Why exactly are we supposed to give a damn what this old fossil thinks about gays??

  2. LiamOg says

    It’s funny how those knee deep in the bible can also be knee deep in pig shit. Perhaps ol’ Carol could ring up Ted Haggard and have a little chat about that.

  3. not surprised says

    So let’s stop reviving her crusty career for her and see how she likes being knee-deep in the land of the forgotten. What an ungrateful, opportunistic bitch.

  4. says

    Not to defend Carol Channing—or those who like her for whatever reason—but keep in mind she WAS married for umpteen years to a queen who barely consummated their marriage, divorced her when he was like 90 to be with a boyfriend, and promptly died. So…yeah. She’s got a little history.

  5. Brian says

    Gosh, Carol. Kind of a stupid move. When the only people who keep your career afloat are the gays, you should probably take great care to maintain an amicable relationship. We’ve certainly provided you with a lavish lifestyle for the past 700 years… you pretty much owe it to us.

  6. Glenn says

    Those comments were sadly ungracious of her…but she IS 85, after all. I’m tempted to cut her a little slack or at least just ignore her and remember her for her performances, not her ill-advised comments.

  7. RJP3 says

    She is 85.
    When my grandfather hit that age he actually seemed to forget he proudly used to display a huge Playboy collection on the living room shelf back in the 1970’s. By the time he hit 85 in the 1990’s he was knee deep in the bible … also working hard to get into heaven. She is old. We should not maintain her career. For whatever the reason this lady married a gay man who would not have sex with her and she was fine with that … she may have her OWN issues. But I AINT EVER SEEING HER. She DID support “the gays” in her younger days … and she did admit she was a bit of a slut … she mentions having 7 guys going at her in Vegas in her youth. 😉

  8. Sean says

    Mehh…the old bag should be knee-deep in her grave soon, I don’t have time to worry about wrinkled up prunes from 50 years ago

  9. Wayne says

    Off topic, but is it just me or doesn’t the pic in the advertisement for Dylan Rosser photography look like Timothy McVeigh, the OKC bomber? What’s sexy about that?

  10. duh says

    She’d still sell out a gay cruise in seconds. We’re an unabashedly forgiving lot.

    Until gays put their money where their mouths are (can we start boycotting companies that bow to the AFA?) we’ll never show our economic power.

  11. Brook says

    Spoken like a true 85 year old who has one leg in the grave. Can’t hold anything against her at this late stage of senility.

    Have a smooth journey, Carol!

  12. Brian says

    “I don’t think about it. If they can’t take care of their own problems, why should I bother. It’s not my problem.”

    Same could be said about octogenarians and the baby boomers cruising toward retirement.

    If we don’t care for each other without requiring some sort of personal benefit, then our society is truly lost.

  13. William says

    All of you queens who think just because she is 85 she is excused from this type language and attitude are the ones that sit by and do nothing to help protect and enhance our LGBT rights. Her words are as damaging as someone who is 25. Age has nothing to do with this! WAKE UP! DO NOT SUPPORT THIS OLD IGGNORANT HAG anymore. Take away our loyality and support to her and she would be hopefully living in shelter somewhere.

  14. says

    Funny how she seemed to care about the gays a year or so ago when she was in West Hollywood’s gay bookstore to do a book signing. I never understood why gay men seem to worship Broadway divas anyway. Bette Midler pulled something very similar a few years ago herself. Looking forward, I say we throw our support behind out gay performers like Rupurt Evert, Neil Patrick Harris, T. R. Knight, Ellen, et. al.

  15. tramp says

    Always felt bad that she lost out on the movie of Hello Dolly. Now I’m glad Barbra Streisand played the part. Fuck the old bitch!

  16. Michael W. says

    Um, how could she not know Gay People’s Chronicle was a gay publication? Did she think the “Gay” part meant they were “happy” and “care-free”? Maybe she can tell us what “23 Skidoo” means…

  17. Kyle Childress says

    Given this quote:

    “I don’t think about it. If they can’t take care of their own problems, why should I bother. It’s not my problem.”

    If she’s knee-deep in the bible, she must be standing on the parts that talk about compassion.

  18. ggg says

    I agree 100% with William. Age is no excuse. My grandparents are in their 80s and they are 2 of the most accepting and understanding people in my life. They are a lot more open minded than a lot of 20 and 30 year olds I know. Some of you guys need to quit using old age as an excuse for ignorance!

  19. Glenn says

    Oh, for God’s sake, William: so those of us who are suggesting maybe her age has something to do with her remarks must be feckless traitors to the LGBT cause? Um, no. Honestly, dear, you should calm down just a tad. I can only speak for myself, but I’m just trying to recognize the simple fact that not everyone makes it to 85 with every one of their marbles shiny and new and maybe, just maybe, we should consider that possibility before crowning Carol Channing as the Most Evil Hag Ever. Obviously you disagree, and that’s fine, but somehow I don’t see how that makes you entitled to be the all-seeing, all-knowing judge of who is and isn’t sufficiently a champion of gay rights.

  20. Kenneth says

    That old bitch would be up to her tits in bibles had it not been for Jerry Herman, a gay man who put, and kept her on the map for over a century, or how ever old she is. Carol Channing = Mathuzalah!

  21. peterparker says

    The first thing I thought about when I read this was seeing the old bag smiling and waving from a float as a the Grand Marshal of the GLBT Pride Parade in West Hollywood about 10 years ago. She certainly seemed to like us that day…then again, she was getting paid to be there. Wonder what they’re gonna think of that when the old bag gets to the pearly gates?

  22. woodroad34 says

    Did anyone else notice her mentioning that because her father had an African-American background, she could dance and sing so well? Apparently gays aren’t the only ones who got a little special treatment here.

  23. William says

    Glenn darling, so change the audience she is refering to then. Lets say to the african american community…would that still be ok for her to say it simply because of her age? And if her marbles are not so shiny and new anymore then she should not be spouting off in a such a public forum. By all means I am not the all-seeing, all-knowing judge of who is or who is not in our corner – but my good sir it CERTAINLY is not you. Atleast I have the balls to stand up to someone with no respect ofr our community while you defend them.

  24. FunMe says

    And to think that Carol was a performer at the 25th Anniversary of Stonewall in NYC. Back in 1994, the gay pride event had a big celebration in Central Park. She was one of the performers.

    NOW she’s trying to say gays are “bad”. What’s up with that.

    Yeah, we can say she’s 85 and that her mind is now all that. But I’m sorry, that’s no excuse.

  25. T H E O says

    If she has one foot already in the grave, I hope to HELL the other one is resting on a banana peel.

  26. Daniel says

    This is very strange. She’s always been pretty positive about he gay friends before this. I saw her this weekend at a benefit attended mostly by gays. We applauded and gave her a standing ovation even after she sang “Little Girl from Little Rock” in the completely wrong key. If I would have known.

  27. Cory says

    Did she really say that? Carol Channing who has had book signings in gay book stores in gayborhoods and was once married to a gay man and didn’t “care”? Wtf? That’s a shame. I never cared much for broadway diva’s or diva’s in general (and I do question the authenticity of a user’s comments re: Bette Midler as she has always outspokenly supported gays), but Carol Channing always seemed like an angel to me when I saw her on occasion. I guess that would be an angel only in regards to issues that pertain to her life. Sadly, she is old and as I have a father who has been seriously ill for a few years now religion is a comfort to them, one which comes with all kinds of clauses and biases…

  28. Jack says

    I’m surprised Andy isn’t kissing her feet since he does that with every straight person he talks about.

    Anyway this is a “I told you moment”. Straight people LOVE gay people’s money. Secondly, NOT EVERY OVERDONE DYSFUNCTIONAL WOMAN IS A GAY ICON. This goes with Tammy Faye Bakker etc. It serves you people as a lesson. You are so desperate for acceptance that you go after people like this.

  29. Jack Mehoff says

    I don’t think it’s a moral imperitive that my favorite entertainers approve of how I live.

    I don’t look to performers for “acceptance” but for entertainment.

  30. Nikko says

    Nonetheless, the bible rightly condemns arrogance as detestable(“abominable” in some versions). Hear that Carol? Humble now…

  31. Nikko says

    ….you ungrateful bitch. Did reading and believing the bible make you this icky?! Then thump it over your head, stupid diva.

  32. Mark says

    Why is everyone just assuming that she really made these comments? She’s been a supporter of LGBT rights for many years. Perhaps the reporter misquoted her.

  33. _____ says

    It turns out the reporter DID misquote her. Why didn’t you post that, Andy??

    Posted by: jjabely | Nov 13, 2006 8:36:59 PM

    That’s according to Channing’s publicist though. Now I don’t know for sure whether or not Channing was set up. That’s definitely a possibility, but I admit that I don’t trust publicists that much either. Remember Neil Patrick Harris’ publicist issuing a statement that he wasn’t gay? And the reporter has not been given a chance to tell his side of the story yet. So none of us know for sure.

  34. Molasses Onassis says

    How could she have been set up? The reporter was just doing a puff piece. I’ve met this reporter and I’m familiar with his work. He’s honest. No it was Carol.

  35. Larry says

    I’m skeptical of this story. Has it been verified? i saw CC perform this weekend to a mostly gay crowd and she seemed to bask in the love from her gay fans. Can’t imagine she’d say something so reckless.

  36. Burt says

    While I wish her no ill will, I don’t get the whole Channing mystic. Why is is that gay men fawn for such tragic women? Why not tragic men?

  37. Ric says

    I know Carol, either she was mis-quoted or she was set-up, which would be easy to do, she doesn’t think as quickly as she used to.

  38. jmg says

    Tiger—that was hilarious. The urban legend to top all urban legends.

    And Cory, Bette said on Larry King I believe that gays are too promiscuous for marriage. But then I guess she was familiar with a certain type of gay from her bathhouse days.

  39. Tyler Anthony says

    I think it’s funny that she may be mad at a closet case husband, yet Carol was pretty quite for a long time about the fact that her father is part Black. Carol would be considered a Quadroon in the South and probably sold a ‘fancy girl’ at the Quadroon Balls of New Orleans.

  40. WTF says

    I don’t like what she said but I suppose I still like Carol Channing. No one’s perfect and at 85, I would say give her a break.

    BTW, is there really much difference between knee-deep in the Bible and being knee-deep in that other stuff?