I'm not condemning gays, says Manny Pacquiao
Washington, May 17 (ANI): Manny Pacquiao has revealed that he is not against gay people but doesn't support gay marriage.
The Filipino boxer said in an interview Wednesday that he has nothing against gay people and that hateful comments attributed to him are untrue.
"What I said is a reporter asked me about gay marriage...I am against gay marriage, but I'm not condemning gays," the LA Times quoted the boxer as saying in an interview with The Times.
"I have family-a cousin-who's gay, and friends, too.
"I'm just against gay marriage. I don't even want to talk about the issue, but I was asked about it, so I gave my opinion."
Pacquiao, 33, was responding the Grove shopping mall's decision to ban him from the Westside venue. The ban turned out to be based on erroneous information that the boxing legend had cited Scripture and suggested gay men should die.
The boxing champion said he never referred to Scripture referencing bringing harm to homosexuals.
Pacquiao said although he's a congressman in the Philippines, he'd prefer to avoid discussion of divisive US social subjects in the future.
"My favorite Scripture is 'Love thy neighbor as you love yourself;
"Obey the Commandments, the Scripture: love everyone, love each other," he said.
In an interview with National Conservative Examiner, Pacquiao addressed President Obama's recent endorsement of gay marriage.
"God's words first ... obey God's law first before considering the laws of man," Pacquiao told the Examiner.
"God only expects man and woman to be together and to be legally married. It should not be of the same sex, so as to adulterate the altar of matrimony, like in the days of Sodom and Gomorrah," he said.
The article goes on to say that "Pacquiao's directive for Obama calls societies to fear God and not to promote sin, inclusive of same-sex marriage and cohabitation."
The original story quoted Leviticus 20:13, which states: "If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads."
But the story did not quote Pacquiao as making the quotation.
Pacquiao later released a statement saying he was misquoted and denying he has animosity for gay people. "I didn't say that, that's a lie.... I didn't know that quote from Leviticus because I haven't read the Book of Leviticus yet."
"I'm not against gay people.... I have a relative who is also gay," the boxer insisted. "We can't help it if they were born that way. What I'm critical of are actions that violate the word of God. I only gave out my opinion that same-sex marriage is against the law of God."
The writer of the original story also backed up Pacquiao's account. But some media outlets attributed the quote to the boxer.
"I sincerely apologize for the confusion my column has caused. I certainly do not represent Pacquiao nor his team," the author wrote. (ANI)
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