Manny Pacquiao, 37, is in the twilight of his acclaimed boxing career.
A world champion in eight different weight classes, he has found a second career in Filipino politics thanks to his own ‘People’s Champ Movement’ that has placed him in congress twice.
He is also a very outspoken Catholic who has an adamant view on homosexuality, as heard in a recent interview:
“It’s common sense. Do you see animals that go male to male or female to female? So the animals are even better,” Pacquiao told local broadcaster TV5 in an interview aired this week.
“Because they know how to distinguish from male to male or female to female. Right? Now if we allow male to male or female to female, then that makes us worse than animals.”
Now we have a PR fail on global proportions that has led to two of his most significant sponsors, Nike (a 10-year sponsor) and Wonderful Pistachios (a 4-year sponsor), to say goodbye.
“We find Manny Pacquiao’s comments abhorrent,” Nike said Wednesday in a statement. “Nike strongly opposes discrimination of any kind and has a long history of supporting and standing up for the rights of the LGBT community.”
Followed by this:
“Wonderful Pistachios is not currently affiliated with Manny Pacquiao nor do his views align with ours,” Wonderful Company spokesman Steven Clark told The Daily Beast. “Wonderful Pistachios stands firmly for diversity and equality, and we proudly support marriage equality and inclusion around the world.”
Fully realizing Pac-Man was against the ropes, he offered this “sorry-not-sorry” apology:
I’m sorry for hurting people by comparing homosexuals to animals. Please forgive me for those I’ve hurt. I still stand on my belief that I’m against same sex marriage because of what the Bible says, but I’m not condemning LGBT. I love you all with the love of the Lord. God Bless you all and I’m praying for you.
Think that made any difference?
Welp, ask some mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and insects.
[PHOTO: Al Bello/Getty Images]