Straight Talk Express

By Robert Ecksel on May 17, 2012
Straight Talk Express
So what if Manny Pacquiao's beliefs run contrary to our own? Who in their right mind cares?

Ever since Vice President Biden goosed President Obama into taking a position, everyone has felt the need to add their two cents…

“I never married. I always lived a la carte.”—Charley Goldman

If there was ever a story that didn’t deserve all the press it has generated it is Manny Pacquaio’s stance on same-sex marriage. Ever since Vice President Biden goosed President Obama into taking a position, everyone has felt the need to add their two cents, whether they’re on the left, the right, or smack-dab in the middle of nowhere.

But the boxing media, parroting the non-boxing media, has taken the ball and run with it, and if I had my way, which of course I don’t, they’d keep running until they collapse from exhaustion.

Pacquiao believes marriage is a sacred union between a man and a woman. What’s the big deal? It’s a traditional way of thinking many people share and it’s no more right than it is wrong. It’s an opinion. It’s a conviction. It’s how Pacquiao feels about the matter. If we’re at peace with ourselves and our life choices, what difference does it make what he thinks?

I figure it ain’t nobody’s business if I do, just as it ain’t nobody’s business if I don’t, and all things being equal vice-versa. But we’ve become so gossipy girly, so voyeuristic and inundated with mindlessness that we make it our business to focus other people’s business, all the while hoping that no one focuses too closely on our own.

I may or may not agree with Manny’s stance on same-sex marriage. But Pacquiao, like the rest of us, has the right to believe whatever he chooses to believe. So what if his beliefs run contrary to our beliefs? Who in their right mind cares?

Have we grown so narrow-minded, politically correct, and parochial that we’ve forgotten that people can actually have minds of their own? The world is complicated. There is no either/or. Forget the simple bromides. There is no right or wrong. Boxing people, all of people, ought to know this better than most. Many may have forgotten what they once knew, or simply still don’t know what they’ve never known. But the condemnation of Pacquiao is way over the top. It would be ridiculous if it wasn’t so troubling.

Several journalists went so far as to fabricate stories to make to their point. Others have treated the issue as an opportunity to be clever, to offer punch line and after punch line in comedy club of the mind. But when Manny is banned from appearing at a shopping mall, of all things, the ultimate contrived paradise of consumer culture, you can be sure that herd instinct has taken hold at the very same time as common sense has fled.

Floyd Mayweather’s deciding to come out, as it were, in favor of same-sex marriage when he did deserves the same degree of gravity as Obama’s and Mitt Romney’s recent proclamations. If Mayweather had spoken up before Pacquiao made his remarks, instead using that time to question the sexual proclivities of his opponents, it would be a whole lot easier to take his support for same-sex marriage seriously.

In the end, which may be fast approaching, we’re all entitled to belief what we believe. Those who don’t like it don’t have to like it; that’s not what it’s about. But shoving one’s beliefs down another person’s throat is fascistic, evidence of our going to hell in a hand basket, or some sort of sex act gone terribly awry.

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  1. Boom Shakala 11:57pm, 05/18/2012

    What is so stupid about this Manny-bashing is that he DIDN’T even say those NASTY quotes attributed to him.

    IT WAS A MISQUOTE, PEOPLE! And that chaotic corner of internet known as Pacland is in uproar over calls for the blood of that pompous “writer” known as Granville Ampong.

    And may I add, that mindset of not allowing gay marriages is the norm for the Christian country of the Philippines, so what can you expect?

    Yes, there are also bigots from the gay community who offer knee jerk reactions against that non-quote of Pacquiao.

  2. Robert Ecksel 01:56pm, 05/18/2012

    I can’t sneak anything by you Irish Frankie. Why would I even try?

  3. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo 01:47pm, 05/18/2012

    Robert Ecksel—“goosed into taking a position”’s hard to get that image out of one’s mind’s eye…please tell us you were being facetious….or not.

  4. Cheekay Atomic 11:21am, 05/18/2012

    @Gil—Hilarity. “Marriage” in modern society has no religious sanctity at all, not even to most religious people. Its largely a legal institution and its incentives have to do with taxation and property, not judgement day.  This is why you can get married at a Las Vegas drive through window with Elvis reading your vows.  And no, it isn’t Jesus dressed up as Elvis. It’s (fake) Elvis.

    That is what “marriage” is today. 

    As to your suggestion, I’d recommend the exact opposite: People who abide FULLY behind biblical interpretations of marriage (all 5 of them) find *their* own terminology and let the rest of society evolve.  Hell, maybe we can call marriage based solely on a literal interpretation of the bible a “Pacquiao.”

    The problem with this is that, according to his ex-wife, Pacquiao knows less about biblically-correct marriage than most gay couples.

  5. David Matthew 10:54am, 05/18/2012

    ‘So what if Manny Pacquiao’s beliefs run contrary to our own? Who in their right mind cares?’

    I certainly believe in everyone’s right to have their own beliefs/opinions.  That said, when we ask ‘who cares what Manny believes?’ - it’s probably those people who would be affected by Manny’s anti-gay marriage stance, since their basic rights would be denied in line w/ Manny’s beliefs.

    Also—Gil.  You talk about ‘marriage’ as religious - but in our society it’s more social and based on civil rights—regardless of the religious origin of it.  It’s interesting to me because people can have any belief they want, as long as it’s not impinging upon another’s right to exercise basic rights.  Here, the rights of gay people aren’t afforded to them because of unnecessary policies that impinge upon their right to access the exact same basic rights that everyone else in society gets to exercise.

  6. Gil 10:45am, 05/18/2012

    Gay Marriage
    A conservative solution to a liberal problem:
    The definition of Marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Therefore, the union between a man and a man should have a different term than the word Marriage. To take it a step farther; the term that would be used for the union between a man and a man cannot be use for a union between a woman and a woman, because that’s a different type of union as well! But I believe in “equal rights” and in legal unions between Men & Men and Women & Women, but it just can’t be called Marriage because that term is already spoken for and is religious in nature. Same sex couples need to come up with their own terminology for their own unions. If they do that, then there is no controversy.

  7. Robert Ecksel 10:36am, 05/18/2012

    Cheekay Atomic—I wonder about your statement: “Politicians get criticized. If he can’t take it, he should give up politics. This is only a story because he’s a politician.” Granted, he’s a politician, but how many Philippine voters are criticizing Pacquiao? We don’t know. Almost all of the criticism we’re privy to seems to be coming from these shores, from this neck of the woods. I think it’s less because he’s a politician than political correctness run amok.

  8. Cheekay Atomic 07:21am, 05/18/2012

    I agree overall, but I am less quick to feel sorry for Pacquiao. He should understand that being criticized for his views is the necessary consequence of running for a government office. 

    Manny complaining about being criticized for his views (with serious political consequences) would be akin to Manny complaining about being punched in the boxing ring; Boxers get punched and politicians get criticized. If he can’t take it, he should give up politics. This is only a story because he’s a politician.

  9. mikecasey 01:43am, 05/18/2012

    Robert, you’ve brightened my day. I’ve been railing against this kind of hypocrisy for God knows how long and will continue to do so until I am no doubt thrown in jail or taken to the rubber room. Have you ever asked one of those survey takers on the street what right he has to ask about your private life? Check out the stunned look on his face. He’s not programmed to deal with logic or resistance. A guy called me up on the phone this week and told me he had to confirm my address and date of birth before he could tell me where he was from and what he wanted. I told him to shove it and added that I was recording the phone call for training purposes and his own protection. He never came back. Sadly, nor will Charley Goldman.

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