Boxing great Manny Pacquiao has sparked anger with controversial comments on the subject of same-sex marriage.
Pacquiao, who is currently running for a senate seat in the Philippines, expressed his views on homosexuality in an interview with local broadcaster TV5.
The 37-year-old suggested approval of same-sex marriage would show “man is worse than animal”.
“As a Christian, same-sex marriage is not allowed,” said Pacquiao. “Woman was made for man, man was made for woman.
“For me it’s common sense. Will you see any animals where male is to male and female is to female?
“The animals are better. They know how to distinguish, male or female. If we approve [of] male on male, female on female, then man is worse than animal.”
Vice Ganda, a popular gay comedian in the Philippines responded to Pacquiao’s comments by tweeting: “The LGBT is a group of people. We are humans. But not animals. Though we’re no saints we will pray for Manny Pacquiao.”
In an Instagram post, singer Aiza Seguerra added: “You might’ve done our country proud but with your statement, you just showed the whole country why we shouldn’t vote for you.
“And yes, I think you are an ignorant, bigoted hypocrite. You made me lose all respect that I had for you, Mr. Pacquiao.”
Pacquiao subsequently responded to the furore created by his comments, in an Instagram post featuring an image of the boxer and his wife.
The eight-weight world champion – beaten by Floyd Mayweather Jr in his last fight – wrote: “I rather obey the Lord’s command than obeying the desires of the flesh.
“I’m not condemning anyone, but I’m just telling the truth of what the Bible says. The truth from the Bible is what changed me from my old ways.
“1 Corinthians 6:9 ‘ Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men.’
“God Bless everyone I love you all.”
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