|Photo c/o Reuters|
According to a recent news story, pound-for-pound champion Manny Pacquiao (who found himself in hot water after allegedly stating the bible quote Leviticus 20:13 on an interview with blogger Granville Ampong on Examiner.com whilst discussing the boxer's opposition to Barack Obama's support of gay marriage) now claims that the issue was a bad case of misquotation.
The quote reads:
“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.”The blogger (Ampong) placed this biblical passage right in the center of Manny's statements, appearing to be the boxer's sentiments to promote violence to the gay community. In a second blog entry, Ampong said people who thought that it was Manny who stated the quote failed to understand what was written.
Regardless of whether people believe the claims or not, the problem is not in Pacquiao's opposition stand but in the passage itself. Are Bible quotes legitimate proof of an act's morality (or lack thereof)? What about those that aren't Christian? Would their dissidence in the Bible make them wrong or even less human?
Separation of Church and State. How thin is the line? Admittedly, not everyone in the state is a saint and not everyone who leads and follows the Church is easily agreeable (or benevolent). This fact makes it difficult for anyone to completely agree with broadening the gap between the two. With the Philippines being the only Catholic country in Asia, some people believe that the Church has to be "hands-on" when it comes to government decision-making... or governing, in general.
Respect means something more than being passive about others' opinions and beliefs, although the "It's my opinion. Get over it!" thinking is how a lot of people define the vague term. Respect should also never be confused with tolerance.
Each celebrity or personality's opinions regarding the gay community is subject to either be praised by human right advocates and shared as "inspiration" among thousands of people who claim to believe in the same principles or frowned upon and bashed in fury by the same thousands.
The opposite of respect is not by just disagreeing. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and to live by the principles that he or she believes in. Contempt is the opposite of respect. It is the mix of two primary emotions disgust and anger. What has anyone of the minority done to you to cause you such contempt? To support violence and angst against people who differ from your principles just as immoral as your claims. And that goes for everyone, not just for the anti-gay community.
The Bible serves as good guidance and its purpose to everyone is different, but to come to a universal understanding is crucial to interpretation. According to Scripture, the Bible does have many purposes. It is “useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17). Others will say that the Bible may be outdated while others rebut and believe that the words and teachings are timeless. The Bible was written by man on how they interpreted the movements and Word of the Lord.
To deny people of genuine love is horrible. Everyone should know the importance of respect, not just those who oppose. My position in this issue to respect and understand, to know your limits and your place. I would wish to come up with a separate book that does exactly this, but just as it is hard to pass a bill to make a law, we're going to be lucky if we have everyone agree to at least a sentence.
The lack of answers to my questions only prove how some people are unreasonable without careful thought. Case in point, people rallying against Gaga's Manila concert. If you've got answers, by all means, please enlighten us.