Photo: Ellen de Vos
SELFIES ARE USUALLY PRETTY HARMLESS. It’s a simple and goofy way of documenting that you’ve been somewhere or done something, and most of the time, the outrage around selfies is overblown and a little bit ridiculous.
But then there are stories like this one.
At Rossio Station in Lisbon, Portugal, there was a 126-old statue commemorating Dom Sebastian, a revered king of Portugal during the 16th century.
— BirGün Gazetesi (@BirGun_Gazetesi) May 9, 2016
Last week, a 24-year-old tourist climbed up to the statue to take a selfie with it. And knocked it over, shattering it.
— G1 (@g1) May 4, 2016
He tried to run away after breaking it, but was caught by police, and will now stand trial for destruction of public property.
Jovem actualiza estátua de D. Sebastião na estação do Rossio para versão pós Alcácer Quibir.
Foto: Público pic.twitter.com/N0nN7DnGyk
— Moiteiro (@pmoiteiro) May 5, 2016
This is hardly the first time a selfie has resulted in destruction: last year, a priceless, 300-year-old Italian statue was smashed thanks to selfie-taking tourists, and a depressing amount of selfies have resulted in deaths this year, whether it’s because a tourist got too close to the edge of a cliff or a bison or a moving train while taking a the picture.
So a note to our traveling selfie-taking friends: there’s nothing wrong with taking a selfie. But please, do not do anything that could destroy a priceless work of art in order to get it. It is not worth the three likes you’ll get on Instagram.