Gomez, 22, posted a photo on her Instagram account showing her hiking up her Burka inside the mosque and revealing her leg to mid-thigh.
Her leg was covered, except for the lower portion of her calf, her ankle and her foot. That’s considered an insult to Islam and the photo drew hundreds of protests on social media.
Sheikh Zayed’s personal mosque, one of the most imposing structures in Abu Dhabi, is considered a holy place and all “intimate behavior,” from holding hands to kissing, is banned. Woman are required to be fully clothed down to the ankles before entering.
Selena’s decision to flout the rule, either out of ignorance or haughtiness, didn’t slow down her vacation, although she removed the photo from her Instagram account.
But the repercussions may extend beyond the social media firestorm.
Since 2009, Gomez has been a UNICEF Ambassador. “She’s played an active role in advocating for the world’s most vulnerable children by participating in numerous campaigns, events, and initiatives on behalf of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF,” according to the group’s Web site.
In 2009, she made her first official field mission as a UNICEF Ambassador to Ghana. Just under 20 percent of the African nation’s people are Muslim. It’s the nation’s second largest religious group next to Christians.
It’s uncertain how she would be greeted now if she returned.
Gomez follows a long list of celebrity ambassadors going back to actor Danny Kaye and Audrey Hepburn in the 1950s. Today the list includes Katy Perry, tennis star Serena Williams, David Beckham, Orlando Bloom, Susan Sarandon and Whoopi Golberg among others.
While there are no strict requirements to become a celebrity ambassador–other than a willingness to work for the organization–celebrities, nonetheless, are supposed to be good role models.
Rihanna has tried mightily to become a UNICEF Ambassador. She even donated more than $100,000 to one of its programs in the Philippines. But she is only listed as a “supporter” on the group’s Web site.
Gomez used to take her image very seriously. But that was before she dated bad boy Justin Bieber and began running with a faster celebrity crowd that includes brats like Kendal Jenner and Cara Delevingne.
Now, she seems to have lost her enthusiasm for setting a standard other kids can look up to. At 22, she’s still young enough to recover from her mistakes. But she can only get away with her spoiled diva behavior for so long, before she fritters away whatever goodwill she has left.
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