Boxer Pacquiao Fights Against Condom Usage

Manny Pacquiao may be a superstar in the boxing ring, but he’s an embarrassment as a politician.

Pacquiao was elected to the House of Representatives in the Philippines last year and he’s finally entered into a debate on a controversial issue: Contraception.

Pacquiao wants to stop the government from issuing condoms to people who can’t afford them… because safe sex is somehow immoral to him. By doing this, he’s siding with the Catholic Church, which has proven time and time again to be light-years behind the times when it comes to sex education.

Unfortunately, he’s not in the minority:

Almost 80 percent of Filipinos are Catholic, a legacy of the Philippines’ Spanish colonial past, and the church has helped to lead two revolutions over the past 25 years while ensuring abortion and divorce remain illegal.

And what about overpopulation that could result? Pacquiao doesn’t care.

“God said, ‘Go out and multiply.’ He did not say, just have two or three kids,” Pacquiao said following a meeting with bishops on Tuesday, shortly after returning from Las Vegas and his latest boxing victory over Shane Mosley.

“It’s sinful to use condoms and commit abortion,” he said in one interview with the media this week.

When asked if family planning was needed to control the country’s booming population, he said:” “My parents were poor… they had four children, it was very difficult but we persevered.”

See? There you go. Screw condoms. Pacquiao’s family made it, so everyone else’s family should be ok, too.

He sounds downright Republican. He even has the hypocrisy angle working for him:

Nevertheless, Pacquiao has had to endure some bruises by stepping into the political ring this week, with his opponents accusing him of hypocrisy after he admitted that his wife used to take the pill as a form of birth control.

A perfect example of, “Do as I say, not as I do.” I don’t know why Pacquiao and his allies can’t simply not use birth control themselves. No, they feel the need to legislate their morality on everybody else — in this case, they’re hurting the people who can least afford to have children. It’s a completely irresponsible policy decision.

The good news is it may be another year before this bill becomes (or doesn’t become) a law. Maybe, in that time, there will be enough backlash from his fans to make him come to his senses.

(Thanks to Dane for the link!)

  • http://www.facebook.com Aaron

    This is not at all surprising. This is the Philippines we’re talking about. My grandmother-in-law is full Philippine and she is against even living together if you’re not related or married. Though I hate to admit it, I’m 99% sure that this thing will go through, which is a shame.

  • Jamie

    As a fan of Pacquiao’s boxing I am UTTERLY disappointed.

  • Steve

    I think it’s fair to call the Catholic Church on contraception in Africa “passive genocide”. Both because of the huge social problems caused by overpopulation in some sub-Saharan countries and the HIV epidemic which has led to infection rates of up to 10 to 15% in some places

  • Drew M.

    Great. A punch-drunk pugilistic politician. Just what this world needs.

  • http://filipinofreethinkers.org Jeiel Aranal

    The group I’m part of, the Filipino Freethinkers, is heavily involved in the fight for a reproductive health bill in the Philippines. Pacquiao’s stance against the RH bill isn’t new but this is the first time he’s getting international infamy because of it. When Manny came out with those frankly misogynistic statements, the women of our group came out swinging. We have a lot of articles about the RH bill if you’re more curious about the issue. We’ve actively protested against the Roman Catholic church here in the Philippines. We even get legal threats now!

    While the Philippines does have a majority of Catholics our government is a secular democracy, our current constitution is based on the American one. In theory, this should give us a clear separation of church and state but this really isn’t the case. One of our main thrusts in the RH (reproductive health) advocacy is to push the issue of secularism to the forefront as a way to stop the Roman Catholic church from meddling with politics.

    In surveys done by polling companies a majority of the country actually does support the RH bill, even that 80% population of Catholics. The main political opponent of the RH bill is the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines and the politicians that have allied with it. For too long, their supposed moral authority has gone unquestioned in our country but the RH bill debate is making many people ask if the hierarchy of the church are acting in a moral way.

    Our stance on the RH bill is that of women’s rights and social justice. Around 11 mothers die everyday from childbirth in the Philippines, the bill addresses this problem not just with contraceptives but also by providing our women with reproductive health information and services that can save lives. It’s not just about sex. These supposed Catholic moralists are standing in the way of saving lives.

    Just earlier today, there was yet another debate in our Congress about the RH bill and the congressman who was against the bill kept harping on God and how the RH bill goes against his imaginary wishes. I saw many Catholics on twitter asking if the Philippines is a theocracy or a secular democracy, which was heartening.

    The anti RH bill zealots are panicking, I think they know they’re losing the fight. The committee head of our RH advocacy just got physically assaulted in the same Congress session.

    Anyhow, enough of my ranting. Thanks Hemant, for shining a bit of international light on the reproductive health issue in our country.

  • Clint Warren

    Sounds to me like he’s an excellent “politician”… siding with the Catholic church is predictable for a sports icon.

  • Miko

    If we accept that condom usage is a moral issue and that you’re really against legislating morality, shouldn’t you be accusing the side that wants the government to distribute condoms of “legislating morality” and congratulate the side that wants the government to be neutral on the issue for not attempting to legislate morality? Or perhaps “legislating morality” is just a code word for “disagrees with me.”

    If you think that government should distribute condoms, leave morality out of it. There are lots of pragmatic arguments for it and (unlike arguments from morality) they have the desirable feature of having some hope of convincing someone who isn’t already convinced.

  • Soleil

    The floating advertisement for Filipino Cupid that is placed as a header on your post is the most disappointing thing about this article.

  • http://thegoddam.blogspot.com/ praiseNull

    I’m curious, is the rhythm method against Catholic rules, too?

  • Drakk

    One too many punches to the head…?

  • Michelle

    @ Jeiel Aranal, Sometimes it can be so frustrating, I’m glad to see you fighting. Thank you.

  • Steve

    @praiseNull
    No. In fact the modern rhythm method was invented and popularized by a Catholic. It is/was the only officially sanctioned method to avoid pregnancy and was widely taught to Catholics. It played perfectly into the whole chastity/abstinence thing.

  • rosie

    and what do you call couples that practice the rhythm method?
    “parents”!!!

  • ShellyD99

    It reminds me of the Onion’s satire article, “Starving Third World Masses Warned Against Evils of Contraception.” That one would be funnier if it didn’t sound so depressingly accurate.

  • Erick

    It’s called the Method of the Cross: Cross your legs, or cross your fingers!

  • Tom

    Yep, religion only does good in this world! ugh…

  • The Pint

    Oh FFS. Here’s another reason I’m eternally thankful that my parents emigrated to the US and had me here rather than in the Philippines. The RCC over there taints everything it touches and is so deeply embedded in the culture that rooting it out so that the government can be a secular one in function, not just in principle, is going to be very difficult. I don’t speak to the majority of my relatives back there because the religion is so strongly adhered to. So thank you, Jeiel Aranal and the Filipino Freethinkers, for fighting this battle.

  • http://jacobblock.com Jacob

    A perfect example of, “Do as I say, not as I do.”

    Semen is sacred, not eggs. Duh!

    /s, but this does seem like a subtle sexism issue.

  • Antonio Yang III

    Twin-Skies here of Filipino Freethinkers.

    I’d like to point out that while RP is 80 percent Catholic, recent surveys have shown that majority of Filipinos actually support the RH Bill.

    http://www.sws.org.ph/pr081016.htm

  • Adam

    I find it ironic that contraception is immoral, but punching someone in the face for money, isn’t. Then again, Catholics do have a history of violence behind their “message of peace.”

  • jose

    Ah, Catholicism. That’s what ‘spreading the Lord’s good news’ looks like.

    I believe Spain is in part responsible for making a clueless twit out of this guy, and so I very much appreciate Jeiel Aranal’s work to correct the damage we inflicted.

  • Lupe

    @Jeiel, We’re glad to see you fighting but yeah, your ranting sucks.

  • Twin-Skies

    Then again, Catholics do have a history of violence behind their “message of peace.”

    Indeed they do. >_<
    http://filipinofreethinkers.org/2011/05/25/anti-rh-assaults-rh-advocate-inside-the-house-of-representatives/

  • http://intensedebate.com/people/ChristopherTK ChristopherTK

    Good-Luck, Jeiel Aranal.

  • http://neosnowqueen.wordpress.com/ neosnowqueen

    Not to quibble, but … oh hell, yeah, I’m going to quibble, because it’s what I do.

    How is it hypocritical that his wife used to take BC and that she doesn’t now? Doesn’t it support his position more that she doesn’t now?

  • alconce

    The Philippines may be a catholic country (more than 80% christian population) but it does not practice what it preaches. A majority of the catholics are non-practitioners and they just do so for convenience sake. How can it be a Catholic or christian country when it is way ahead in the world when it comes to corruption and human rights violations. It is further compounded by a publicity hungry clergy who are supposed to be celibates but in reality are predatory promiscous homosexuals invoking the name of god to victimize unsuspecting followers.

  • Steve Ride

    If more people used condoms there would be less people like him around.

  • http://cranialhyperossification.blogspot.com GDad

    “It’s sinful to use condoms and commit abortion.”

    Using condoms is contraception, not abortion. It’s the difference between not eating the cake and walking the five miles to burn off the calories.

  • http://cranialhyperossification.blogspot.com GDad

    In case my delete request didn’t happen, I’d like to apologize for coming across a little insensitive. My analogy was intended to express that contraception is before the fact, and abortion is after the fact, but I think I made it sound like a bit of a lark instead of an important issue.

  • Hypatia’s Daughter

    The RCC permits only certain “natural” birth control (NBC) methods (of which the “Rhythm Method” is one) and is a fine example of how twisted the theological logic gets.
    Using artificial birth control (ABC) is wrong because every sexual act should be capable of resulting in conception, and nothing done to intentionally prevent conception. To do otherwise is a sin.
    Except NBC is doing precisely that. You are deliberately having sex when you cannot get pregnant.
    Jesus said that “lusting” in your heart” is as sinful as lusting in the flesh because it reflects your desire to sin. Isn’t the same be true of using NBC – you are desiring the fun of sex without the the risk of conception?

  • Slider33

    He get hit in the head repeatedly for a living. Why would anyone listen to this guy?

  • Pablo

    This is wildly off-topic, but obviously light-years are a unit of distance, not time. I expect the writer to be aware of this, but his use, even if ironic or in hyperbole of the phrase, may confuse some readers, furthering a misunderstanding that has gone for too damn long. If there’s a place in the internet I expect to be actively destroying ignorance in all fields, it would be this.

  • JJR

    “It’s sinful to use condoms and commit abortion,” [Manny Pacquiao] said in one interview with the media this week.

    Hey, doofus, more condom use = LESS abortion.

  • Jesus

    I thought the corrupt government was trying to keep Pacquiao out and had the political muscle to do it. How did he even get elected?

  • Twin-Skies

    How did he even get elected?

    Welcome to the Philippines, where half of our congressmen and senators are former actors, comedians, and other has-been celebrities.

  • grazatt

    as Bugs Bunny would say What a maroon

  • Guest

    Go Pacquiao!


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