Corrupted like Beckham 

David Beckham, superstar footballer and global celebrity boasting millions of followers on social media has launched a holiday campaign with Qatar Tourism.

Although Beckham and his wife Victoria have an estimated fortune of £380 million, this has not prevented him from becoming the face of Qatar’s tourism industry, ahead of the November World Cup, for a reported fee of £10 million. 

In the video, Beckham shows his action-packed stay in the country over the course of 48 hours — Beckham explores the spice markets of Souq Waqif, dishes up tacos inspired by Qatari flavours and hits the streets of Doha on a motorbike, while he lauds Qatar as an amazing place. 

“Qatar has surprised me with a wide range of great experiences you can have in just 48 hours. The people are warm and welcoming, and it is a great place to spend a few days,” Beckham said in a released statement.

Yet Beckham’s video is highly deceptive. In reality, Qatar’s rulers curb free speech, using the power of the law to silence perceived critics. Gay people are persecuted as it is still illegal for people to be gay there with prison sentences of up to seven years. Misogyny is also rifle in Qatar. If that wasn’t bad enough, over 6,500 migrant workers have died in Qatar while building the infrastructure for the tournament, the Guardian, citing official figures, has reported.

Beckham’s unprincipled decision to promote Qatar proves that he will always put money before morals. In 2017, Beckham revealed that he identifies as a feminist, praising his parents and wife for teaching him the importance of giving women the respect and appreciation they rightfully deserve throughout his life. Yet this does not align with his latest advert in Qatar, where women are discriminated against. The country’s male guardianship system forces women to seek approval to marry, study or travel.

Beckham who has portrayed himself as a champion of minority groups and the underprivileged is really just another celebrity hypocrite. How he can remain as an ambassador for Unicef, the United Nations children’s charity is shameful. 

Image Credit: Qatar Tourism