Re-banned, actually. He was banned from the chic outdoor LA mall back in 2012 when he condemned President Obama for supporting marriage equality. The Grove later removed that ban, believing he had been misquoted. Now he’s been banned AGAIN, following his most recent anti-gay comments.
You might recall that Pacquiao said in a TV interview last month that gay people “are worse than animals.” He later apologized, saying: “I’m sorry for comparing homosexuals to animals. Please forgive me for those I’ve hurt.” Later, though, he Instagrammed a passage from Leviticus that calls for gays to be put to death. So much for that apology.
Pacquiao and his entourage were recently spotted at the Grove, exiting the movie theater, and the ban was reinstated.
Grove honchos saw Manny on the property … and after he left, decided they don’t want him to come back.
“These are statements of hatred,” Grove owner Rick Caruso tells us … “A lot of people from the gay community come to The Grove and they have a right not to feel uncomfortable.”
“Manny Pacquiao is no longer welcome.”
On the one hand, YES. Zero tolerance for hate speech.
On the other hand… um… as commenters on Towleroad have pointed out, how can we expect Christian bakers to serve us when we won’t do the same? Bit of a slippery slope.
Seems like a very stupid move by Mr. Caruso. It’s one thing if this idiot boxer was standing on a soapbox preaching at shoppers, or if he punched someone on the property, or did some illegal act there… but banning someone from a shopping center because they don’t agree with their viewpoint is really setting a bad precedent. Not to mention an illegal precedent which will hand the boxer free publicity. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
What do you think?
(Photo: Pacific Coast News)