Selena Gomez haters use singer’s comments on Israel-Hamas war to reignite Hailey Bieber feud

By Abby Amoakuh

Updated Jan 5, 2024 at 03:24 PM

Reading time: 4 minutes

It is undeniable that Selena Gomez has been on a bit of a downward trajectory lately. Once celebrated for her authenticity and compassion, fans have started to brand the singer and actress as a “pick me” and “self-centred” following some TikTok videos, her unsophisticated comments during the Israel-Hamas war, and her new blossoming romance with record producer Benny Blanco. Following these instances, the internet resorted to what it does best: misogyny and pitting women against each other. So let’s take a look at how fans are trying to revive Gomez’s feud with Hailey Bieber amid her waning popularity.

It all began in September 2023 when fans started to become oversaturated and annoyed with Gomez’s multiple TikTok videos about being single and unable to find a partner.

@noahglenncarter

People have turned on Selena Gomez because she’s single #foryou #selenagomez #pickme

♬ Ambient-style emotional piano - MoppySound

As a consequence, fans called the singer a “pick me,” which is internet language for a person who is willing to beg for attention and bends over for other people’s approval. Although some fans pointed out that Gomez was likely just promoting her upcoming album, which has a lead single called ‘Single Soon’, others continued to exclaim how tired they were of Gomez’s behaviour.

@thereealz

Imagine how tired we are #foryoupage #foryou #pickmegirl #viral #fyp #fypシ #fishingforcompliments #smh #funny #pickmechoosemeloveme #toogrown

♬ original sound - Sunday Best

“I thought I was the only one who noticed,” one TikTok user shared. “Man, she is Selena Gomez, if she’s not in a relationship [it] is because she doesn’t want to. Period,” another one stated, seemingly unsympathetic to Gomez lamenting about her relationship status. “Not Hailey fans being so jealous cause Selena is like 10000 times richer and more famous and has the biggest beauty brand right know and Rhode is going down,” someone else noted in response to the backlash, with a gentle nod to her past feud with Hailey Bieber. 

Let’s now move on to 30 October, when Gomez and her makeup brand Rare Beauty started to face boycott calls. The actress wrote a statement in regard to the Israel-Hamas war in which she expressed her desire to stay off social media due to the horrors and violence she was witnessing: “We need to protect all people, especially children, and stop the violence for good. I’m sorry if my words will never be enough for everyone or a hashtag. I just can’t stand by innocent people getting hurt. That’s what makes me sick. I wish I could change the world. But a post won’t.”

Gomez’s company, Rare Beauty, also announced that it would be donating to both Palestinian and Israeli charities amid the ongoing war.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez (@rarebeauty)

However, multiple netizens called her position vague and accused the singer of playing both sides and making the current war about herself. Most people took particular offence to her claim that one post couldn’t change anything, because Gomez has over 400 million followers on Instagram alone. For context, BBC World News currently has a reach of 300 million households and 1.8 million hotel rooms.

While her response undoubtedly lacked the elegance and compassion you would expect from a star who undoubtedly has undergone a lot of media training and experience in public speaking, it also reflected a wider dilemma with public figures speaking out about foreign conflicts. In short, a lot of people would argue that they are simply not equipped to.

Speaking about war is difficult on its own if one doesn’t have a lot of knowledge about militarisation and political conflicts. However, celebrities and influencers speaking out about this particular war have led to an unprecedented rise of misinformation, mainly because most of them don’t have the lived engagement, expertise or extensive political knowledge to engage in the discussion effectively.

For this reason, actress and activist Jameela Jamil posted a statement on her Instagram in which she implored her fans to stop asking her to post any accounts about the war, noting that she isn’t a news organisation and can’t guarantee accurate reporting. Furthermore, she highlighted the consequences of posting misinformation that can be weaponised against innocent people. 

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Jameela Jamil (@jameelajamil)

Hundreds of pro-Iraeli protesters gathered outside the BBC headquarters after the news organisation remained firm on its editorial stance not to call Hamas a terror group. Weeks later, pro-Palestinian protestors criminally vandalised the headquarters and accused the BBC of manufacturing support for Israel with its reporting. Words broadcasted to millions have the potential to incite protests and violence, especially in times as polarising as these. 

Just because Gomez has a wider reach than most news organisations do doesn’t mean that she has the appropriate resources and reporting capabilities to comment on this war. In fact, some would say that her decision to step back and focus on donating aid was actually the responsible thing to do. However, the internet loves villains way more than responsible celebrities so…

And to make her fit the role, netizens started to revive the singer’s old feud with Bieber. In case you don’t know, Bieber is the wife of Gomez’s on-and-off-again ex-boyfriend Justin Bieber. Both women have been very vocal about fans trying to manufacture a feud between the two over the past few years.

It placed Bieber at the receiving end of a vicious amount of online misogyny and ended with both of them imploring their fandoms to stop this villainous cycle of pitting women against each other because of men. Their statements were successful in ending the backlash but it looks like fans didn’t get the message for too long.

The fact that people are still wanting to compare these two as if they have any connections to each other, apart from the ones fans are willing to manufacture, is demeaning. It robs both women of the opportunity to move on with their lives and displays the public’s willingness and eagerness to drag them through the misogynistic mud every time they do something that displeases them.

The scrutiny Gomez was under heightened when fans learned of her new romance with producer Benny Blanco.

“@selenagomez if you can’t handle the hate then stop posting pictures of your boyfriend lol, it should be special between you two only. Don’t be mad at your fans, they love you,” multiple fans posted, quoting an admittedly petty comment she left under Bieber’s post a couple of years ago when he defended his then-girlfriend.

There are only two roles Gomez is allowed to play when it comes to her love life. She can either be the woman who’s moved on and considers herself “too good” to reminisce on the old days or she is the jealous and obsessed ex, desperate for the attention of anyone associated with the Bieber name.  Both roles are highly dependent on how much the public likes her at the time of posting.

Gomez is already viewed through an incredibly misogynistic lens that unleashes vitriol and hatred every time she dares to step out of line and do things that her fans deem as unusal, such as date Benny Blanco. To further tie her to a man she hasn’t dated for the last five years and continue to feed this baseless rumour regarding a feud with Hailey robs her of the freedom and self-determination we grant the only person who hasn’t been damaged personally throughout this feud: Justin Bieber. I couldn’t be more over this damn man.

Keep On Reading

By Abby Amoakuh

Who is Selena Gomez dating? From Justin Bieber to Benny Blanco, here’s her full dating history

By Abby Amoakuh

Controversial video chat site Omegle shuts down after mounting child abuse allegations

By Lois Freeman

The ugly path to freedom: How I finally ended my teenage eating disorder

By Bianca Borissova

What role did Mormons, momfluencers and pre-teen girls play in the current Stanley Cup craze?

By Alma Fabiani

Is David Attenborough dead? Netizens concerned by trending hashtag

By Fatou Ferraro Mboup

Samaria Ayanle’s tragic death prompts theories about a serial killer targeting Black women in London

By Charlie Sawyer

Jennifer Coolidge thanks evil gays during Emmy Awards 2024 acceptance speech

By Charlie Sawyer

TikToker exposes exclusive celebrity dating app Raya as a hub for toxic men

By Abby Amoakuh

Trump’s gag order paused as Biden secures more pandas from China

By Alma Fabiani

Cult leader accused of being behind 400 deaths including 191 children

By Abby Amoakuh

South Africa is challenging the Western-led world order with its genocide case against Israel

By Fatou Ferraro Mboup

UK police left children at mercy of grooming gang paedophiles, review finds

By Charlie Sawyer

Singer Luke Combs sickened to hear about his team’s $250K lawsuit against loyal fan, offers to help

By Charlie Sawyer

TikToker Cliff Tan shares his tips on how to feng shui your room for love ahead of Valentine’s Day

By Alma Fabiani

Watch terrifying moment waterslide explodes into huge fireball at theme park

By Abby Amoakuh

Who is Brit Smith, the smaller artist JoJo Siwa allegedly stole Karma from?

By Abby Amoakuh

21-year-old mistakes terminal cancer for normal back pain and dies within days

By Abby Amoakuh

Where is Melania Trump? Is the former First Lady hatching an escape plan?

By Charlie Sawyer

How did YouTuber Tana Mongeau become so rich? Stalker stories and messy relationships

By Charlie Sawyer

Understanding the sneaky link: Meaning of the dating trend beyond the hook-up