Think Progress is promoting the progressive Courage Campaign’s call for Nike to drop its sponsorship of boxer Manny Pacquiao following his widely reported remarks about Obama’s newly (r)evolved position on gay marriage.
From the Courage Campaign website:
In an interview published Tuesday, March 15th with the conservative Examiner newspaper, the world-famous boxer and Los Angeles resident quoted Leviticus, saying:
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.
One huge problem: Pacquiao didn’t say that.
In fact, he says he’s never even read Leviticus.
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
Even Granville Ampong, the writer who interviewed Pacquiao, claims the media erroneously attributed his editorial comments to the boxer.
[N]owhere in my supposition and integration of my interview with Pacquiao did I mention that Pacquiao recited this Leviticus 20:13 nor did I imply that Pacquiao had quoted such. I have simply reminded in my column how God made it clear in the Old Testament time that such practice of same-sex marriage is detestable and strictly forbidden, in as much as God wants to encourage his people practices that lead to health and happiness and fullness of life.
He’s calling on writers for USA Today and LA Weekly to retract their smears of Pacquiao.
The Village Voice’s Runnin’ Scared blog admits the coverage was wrong, but suggests it was Ampong’s fault:
We — and dozens of other news outlets — read the same article, in which Ampong clearly credits Pacquiao with quoting the Bible passage. It’s since been modified to clarify that Pacquiao isn’t the one who made the reference
Meanwhile, the Courage Campaign is still rallying the lefty troops to pressure Nike into dropping Pacquiao. Using the #DropManny hashtag, the organization is calling on Nike to:
Stand with millions of LGBT and fair minded-people the world over. Drop Manny Pacquiao now. Hatred surely does not = Nike
So far, the Courage Campaign has shown no signs of halting this attack on Pacquiao’s reputation and livelihood and Think Progress is happy to go along for the ride. Even now, Think Progress is smearing Pacquiao for the intent of his remarks, rather than holding him to what he actually said:
The progressive goon squad at work.
Pacquiao was scheduled to be interviewed on “Extra” this afternoon at The Grove in LA.
In light of liberal outrage over what Manny Pacquaio said but didn’t actually say, Pacquaio has been banned from The Grove for life:
— Rick Caruso (@RickCarusoLA) May 16, 2012
“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.”
We wouldn’t be surprised if this un-endorsement becomes the first of many. Pacquiao has an insane amount of high-profile athletic sponsors, including Hewlett-Packard and Hennessy, who probably don’t want to align themselves with such extreme anti-gay sentiments.
We should note, by the way, that LA Weekly has yet to actually admit culpability in propagating an unfounded story or issue any retractions or corrections.
Twitterer Davey D has been following the story, defending Pacquiao and calling out LA Weekly and others for their lack of integrity, journalistic and otherwise.