NEW YORK (AP) — The producers of "Sesame Street" want you to know that Bert and Ernie are not, in fact, gay.
Sesame Workshop tweeted Tuesday the characters have many human traits but "remain puppets, and do not have a sexual orientation." (That tweet was later deleted.)
The workshop did not answer questions about why some puppets have been given girlfriends.
In a second tweet, the workshop says, "Sesame Street has always stood for inclusion and acceptance."
The tweets came in response to an interview published Sunday by Queerty with Mark Saltzman, a "Sesame Street" writer. He says when he was writing scenes with Bert and Ernie, he "always felt that without a huge agenda" they were lovers.
Frank Oz, who created the Bert character, also weighed in. He tweeted that he and Muppets creator Jim Henson "never created them to be gay."
When I wrote “They’re not, of course”, did you think I was saying something like, "They’re straight like everyone else.” ? What I was actually saying was “They’re not, of course. Jim and I never created them to be gay”. Just a misunderstanding. Thanks for for the discussion. https://t.co/148yb3BuUk— Frank Oz (@TheFrankOzJam) September 19, 2018