Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie are not gay and will not be getting married, program-makers said after an online petition calling for the pair to have a sex-sex union gained support.

The call for Bert and Ernie to get married on Sesame Street was a serious one, with campaigners saying it would be a way of promoting tolerance.

More than 7,000 people have signed the petition (, with more than 4,000 liking a Bert and Ernie Get Married Facebook page.

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However, Sesame Street bosses have issued this – hilariously serious – statement on the issue, reminding people that the pair are “just puppets” and therefore cannot be gay or otherwise.

“Bert and Ernie are best friends.  They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different from themselves,” the Sesame Street Facebook statement reads.

“Even though they are identified as male characters and possess many human traits and characteristics (as most Sesame Street Muppets™ do), they remain puppets, and do not have a sexual orientation.”

The decision will come as a blow to campaigners, who feel that it’s time the Sesame Street bachelors came out and waved the rainbow flag.

"We are not asking that Sesame Street do anything crude or disrespectful," the online petition says. "It can be done in a tasteful way. Let us teach tolerance of those that are different."

However, some will be relieved as the Bert and Ernie debate spawned several with counter-petitions such as ‘Leave Bert and Ernie alone’ and ‘Stop Bert and Ernie Getting Married’.

Bert And Ernie have been trending on Twitter since yesterday.

“It doesn't matter if Bert and Ernie marry or not. Their bond is stronger than any marriage,” reasoned one Twitter user.

While writer Armistead Maupin said: “The folks who fret that a wedding between Bert and Ernie would "sexualize" a kids' show were remarkably silent about a frog porking a pig.”