Should Bert & Ernie Have a Televised Same-Sex Wedding?
Most of us grew up watching Bert and Ernie bicker on "Sesame Street," and urban legend has suggested that the perennial roomies were actually educational television's puppet version of same-sex love. Now a group is calling for the show to air an episode featuring Bert and Ernie uniting themselves in legal matrimony.
A petition circulating on change.org by a gay rights group is urging people to chime in with support for their somewhat unconventional request. The group explains their reasoning on the petition page:
In this horrific age of LGBT kids taking their own lives, they need to know that they ARE BEAUTIFUL and their lives are worth living. Aside from those that are committing suicide, the bullies that facilitate these tragedies need to learn that homophobia is NOT okay. They need to know that acceptance of their fellow human beings would indeed plant a seed of peace that will reverberate throughout the world. We are not asking that Sesame Street do anything crude or disrespectful. Only that they allow Bert & Ernie to marry or even add a transgender character to the show. It can be done in a tasteful way. Let us teach tolerance of those that are different. Let Sesame Street and PBS Kids be a big part in saving many worthy lives.
Over on Facebook, where the group has set up a "Bert and Ernie Get Married" page, they've accumulated over 1,100 "likes," but the comments on their postings are varied among those who agree in their mission, and those who clearly do not.
"I totally think they should make it legal since they have been together since 1969," says one commenter.
Some object gently:
Seriously! No I am not against homosexuality but come on!!! Bert and Ernie! This is a show for children. They have enough to learn! Let them be little and enjoy a show that offers NOTHING about sex and marriage. I never once thought anything about them sleeping in the same room. Why should we put this in their innocent minds when they are so young! To who ever started this -Don't we have enough in this country to worry about?
However, others have left comments about the characters needing to "find Jesus," or that this kind of material on the show would corrupt children, or prove that gay men lust for children.
"Sesame Street," has always been progressive in terms of content, however they have never acknowledged that Bert and Ernie, who share a bedroom but sleep in twin beds, are homosexual. Last year the show, specifically a Tweet about a hairdo attributed to Bert, came under fire for secretly pushing a gay agenda through their characters, an accusation the show flatly denied.
"Sesame Street," is produced in New York, where same-sex marriage recently became legal.