Selena Gomez was forced to cancel her two concerts in St. Petersburg scheduled for last week because she was denied a Russian Visa, despite the petition created by fans to get her to Russia.
According to the LA Times, the Change.org petition said Gomez “is a talented, award-winning pop superstar with a Top 10 album and multiple hit singles under belt, as well as a worldwide following of devoted fans. By speaking out, Selena can let LGBT folks in Russia know that we stand with them, and they are not alone.”
However, the law banning “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations around minors” has made the Russian government worried Gomez wouldn’t comply.
Earlier this year, both Lady Gaga and Madonna spoke out for LGBT rights and were accused of violating their visas during their tours through Russia.
After being denied her visa, Gomez remained silent about the ordeal, but other celebrities like Cher, Elton John and Andy Cohen have been very vocal about their opinions on Russia’s new laws.
Though Gomez didn’t comment on Russia, LGBT blogger John Becker said she still made the Russian government think about their new law once again.
“This shows that the Russian government is on edge, it’s nervous, and it’s aware of the bruising its reputation has taken in the wake of their anti-gay crackdown,” John Becker wrote. “For the first time since the end of the Yeltsin administration, more Americans have a negative perception of Russia, and it’s clear that the country’s crackdown on LGBT rights has made a difference here.”
Becker added, “This cancellation of Selena Gomez’s visa shows that the Russian government is sensitive and on the defense, and shows that the pressure from people all around the world and the backlash against these laws is strong. They’re afraid to have someone like Selena Gomez come in and potentially use her platform to advance LGBT rights.”