“I was a part of a team of a person I considered a friend and someone I really looked up to,” he says. “And then he later came out publicly with some anti-gay statements and turned out to be an extreme homophobe.
“It’s a personal issue with me. My mom’s a lesbian, and I just couldn’t call him a friend so I had it covered up with this.”
Although he does not name the friend in question, he did criticize Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao, whom Bautista joined in his fight against Ricky Hatton in 2009, for calling gay people “worse than animals” in 2016.
In an interview with TMZ, Bautista called Pacquiao “a f*cking idiot” when asked about his statements.
“I don’t think it’s funny. If anyone called my mother an animal, I’d stick my foot in his ass.”
At the time, Bautista said he still looks up to him as a fighter but could not accept his personal views.
“You can’t come back from that. There’s no coming back from that.”
Images of Bautista prior to the cover-up show a flaming meteor on his left forearm, which matches Pacquiao’s own left forearm tattoo.
The meteor is a known symbol of the Filipino boxer, who used to feature the image on his Nike merchandise prior to being dropped by the fashion brand.
See the rest of the Filipino American actor’s tattoo breakdown down below:
Many people might not know this, but NextShark is a small media startup that runs on no outside funding or loans, and with no paywalls or subscription fees, we rely on help from our community and readers like you.
Everything you see today is built by Asians, for Asians to help amplify our voices globally and support each other. However, we still face many difficulties in our industry because of our commitment to accessible and informational Asian news coverage.
We hope you consider making a contribution to NextShark so we can continue to provide you quality journalism that informs, educates, and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way. Thank you for supporting NextShark and our community.