Pacman sacked by Nike, faces election boycott for same-sex comments

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Manny Pacquiao, Juan Manuel MarquezSports shoe giant Nike fired Manny Pacquiao and terminated its advertising contract with the boxer and Senate candidate in this year’s Philippine elections with immediate effect over his derogatory remarks about same-sex relationships.

“We find Manny Pacquiao’s comments abhorrent,” Nike said in an official statement, adding that “Nike strongly opposes discrimination of any kind and has a long history of supporting and standing up for the rights of the LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] community.”

The company also reacts to an online petition by Change.org and a related Twitter campaign #DropPacman where Pacquiao gets challenged to seek dialogue with the Philippine LGBT community, otherwise the petition would be extended to Foot Locker, a US sportswear and footwear retailer for whom Pacquiao also does commercials.

The popular boxer later apologised for his remarks, but still insisted that he was against same-sex marriage – which is illegal in the Philippine anyway. His strict stance is also derived from his newly adopted belief as a Born Again Christian.

This stirred more ire in social media where people turned to Twitter hashtags like #WorseThanAnimals and #PrayforMannyPacquiao to voice their anger. The boxer’s own Twitter followers dropped to about 11,000 from more than two million.

Pacquiao’s longtime promoter Bob Arum was himself quick to apologise to the LGBT community in the US, where his mentee was also slammed for his ill-considered remarks, including by his boxing opponent Floyd Mayweather Jr. who said Pacquiao should refrain from trashing gay people and “let people live their lives.”

Former basketball champ Earvin “Magic” Johnson also criticised Pacquiao’s statement, saying “I won’t be watching another one of Manny Pacquiao’s fights.” Professional basketball player Jason Collins said on Twitter: “I lost all respect for you. Bigoted people like you (yes you are one) should never hold an office in politics.”

LGBT groups, activists, celebrities and liberal-minded people also called for a vote boycott for Pacquiao in the May 9 elections, discussing the issue on hashtags such as #NoToManny2016 or #ZeroVoteforManny.

The 37-year old congressman has been, at least until now, among those favoured to win a Senate seat in the elections. Latest surveys showed him in eight place for the race to win 12 vacant seats in the Senate.

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

Sports shoe giant Nike fired Manny Pacquiao and terminated its advertising contract with the boxer and Senate candidate in this year’s Philippine elections with immediate effect over his derogatory remarks about same-sex relationships.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Manny Pacquiao, Juan Manuel MarquezSports shoe giant Nike fired Manny Pacquiao and terminated its advertising contract with the boxer and Senate candidate in this year’s Philippine elections with immediate effect over his derogatory remarks about same-sex relationships.

“We find Manny Pacquiao’s comments abhorrent,” Nike said in an official statement, adding that “Nike strongly opposes discrimination of any kind and has a long history of supporting and standing up for the rights of the LGBT [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] community.”

The company also reacts to an online petition by Change.org and a related Twitter campaign #DropPacman where Pacquiao gets challenged to seek dialogue with the Philippine LGBT community, otherwise the petition would be extended to Foot Locker, a US sportswear and footwear retailer for whom Pacquiao also does commercials.

The popular boxer later apologised for his remarks, but still insisted that he was against same-sex marriage – which is illegal in the Philippine anyway. His strict stance is also derived from his newly adopted belief as a Born Again Christian.

This stirred more ire in social media where people turned to Twitter hashtags like #WorseThanAnimals and #PrayforMannyPacquiao to voice their anger. The boxer’s own Twitter followers dropped to about 11,000 from more than two million.

Pacquiao’s longtime promoter Bob Arum was himself quick to apologise to the LGBT community in the US, where his mentee was also slammed for his ill-considered remarks, including by his boxing opponent Floyd Mayweather Jr. who said Pacquiao should refrain from trashing gay people and “let people live their lives.”

Former basketball champ Earvin “Magic” Johnson also criticised Pacquiao’s statement, saying “I won’t be watching another one of Manny Pacquiao’s fights.” Professional basketball player Jason Collins said on Twitter: “I lost all respect for you. Bigoted people like you (yes you are one) should never hold an office in politics.”

LGBT groups, activists, celebrities and liberal-minded people also called for a vote boycott for Pacquiao in the May 9 elections, discussing the issue on hashtags such as #NoToManny2016 or #ZeroVoteforManny.

The 37-year old congressman has been, at least until now, among those favoured to win a Senate seat in the elections. Latest surveys showed him in eight place for the race to win 12 vacant seats in the Senate.

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