Elton John is standing up for his rights. The iconic performer, 67, recently sat down for an extended interview with the UK's Sky News, where the singer and gay icon discussed the progress that has been made in protections for LGBTQ individuals, and the strides that still need to be made.
"Globally, we seem to have gone backwards over the last eighteen months, and certainly in certain areas," John said in the interview. "As long as I'm alive, I will fight for people's rights—anybody whose human rights are wronged or taken away from them, I will try and fight them… I may not achieve anything, but I have to try."
"There are signs of hope," the "Your Song" singer continued. "The new pope is doing wonderful. I mean, he's excited me so much by his humanity and taking everything down to the humility of faith, no matter what it is, what faith you have, what religion you have, who you believe in and what you believe in. He's stripped it down to the bare bones and said, 'It's all basically about love and taking everybody in.'"
"We have a long way to go but we have made great strides," John added. "I'm very grateful for that."
After more than ten years with his love David Furnish, John entered into a civil partnership with the filmmaker in 2005. Asked whether the church should allow the LGBTQ members of the clergy to get married, John responded simply, "Of course."
"I don't see why Catholic priests have to be celibate," he said. "It's crazy. These are old and stupid things, and the church hierarchy might be up in arms about it, the traditionalists, but, times have changed. We live in a different time."
"If Jesus Christ was alive today, I cannot see him, as the Christian person that he was and the great person that he was, saying, 'This could not happen,'" the Grammy winner continued. "He was all about love and compassion and forgiveness and trying to bring people together. That is what the church should be about."
As to when he and David will tie the knot after same-sex marriages became legal in the UK in July 2013, John said, "We can't get married this year cause we had a civil partnership and I think the government kind of messed that one up. I don't think we can get married until next year. However, when we do do it, it will be very quiet and it will be very off the cuff. We had our big shebang when we had our civil union. We will, and I think it's a great opportunity to take advantage of the new laws and to celebrate it."