All you need to do is skim through the comments on his social media posts to see the overreaction from people who think one of the most popular athletes on the planet was making some sort of statement.
He wasn’t. I suspect most people standing next to the statue, unaware of cultural norms, would have accidentally done the same thing. Putting your foot on a ledge just looks “cooler,” I guess, than standing there doing nothing.
Ronaldo hasn’t apologized, nor has he taken any of the photos down. He shouldn’t have to. This wasn’t a slight against Buddhists. If anything, he probably thought he was being kind and welcoming by standing next to a religious statue. It’s the same kind of unintentional mistake as non-Catholics being offered communion and taking it because they think refusing it would be rude.
Cut the man some slack. He’s not the monster some people are making him out to be.
(Thanks to Kurtis for the link)