Manny Pacquiao has been banned from the Grove shopping center following… (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles…)
Manny Pacquiao took on a touchy issue when he criticized President Obama's decision to support gay marriage in an interview with National Conservative Examiner. Things got even touchier when the writer of the article decided to throw in a biblical quote that states gay men "must be put to death."
Now the Grove, owned by shopping mall magnate Rick Caruso, has banned the popular boxer, who was scheduled to conduct an interview for the TV show "Extra" at the outdoor shopping center on Wednesday.
After first announcing the ban on its Twitter feed Monday night, the Grove released the following statement: "Based on news reports of statements made by Mr. Pacquiao, we have made it be known that he is not welcome at The Grove and will not be interviewed here now or in the future. The Grove is a gathering place for all Angelenos and not a place for intolerance."
The Examiner article quotes Pacquiao as saying: "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."
The article, written by Granville Ampong, goes on to quote Leviticus 20:13: "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."
Ampong has since clarified that Pacquiao never quoted Leviticus, blaming "biased writers" for suggesting that the boxer wished death on gay men.
Pacquiao, a devout Catholic and a congressman in his homeland of the Philippines, said on his website that he is not against gay people. "What I'm critical of are actions that violate the word of God," he said. "I only gave out my opinion that same-sex marriage is against the law of God."
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