The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), has had its fair share of controversy over the years both at a civil and international level. Their constitution revolves around the Islamic religious text—the Quran—and because of this, there are many rules they adhere to that leave many in the Western world baffled.
1. Red in the Face about Valentine’s Day
As countries across the globe celebrate Valentine’s Day with those they love, and a of sea red and white is everywhere you look, February 14 becomes a very different experience in KSA. It’s not an Islamic tradition and is considered an event that would lead people to date or have contact outside of marriage. To combat this, individuals and businesses are forbidden to highlight Valentine’s Day in any way. The Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice (the Religious Police) keep an eye out for any stores selling red, or heart-shaped items, and red roses even. Youngsters aren’t exempt either, and schoolgirls are sent home to change if there’s even a slither of red on their person. In nearby Dubai, Valentines Day is celebrated in a big way, but Saudi Arabia wants no part of this “decadent” symbol of Western culture.