Things That Matter

Umm… Human Body Parts Washed Up At Brazil’s Olympic Beach Volleyball Site

SteveAllenPhoto / Twenty20

The 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro are set to start August 5, and with all eyes falling on Brazil, there seem to be more and more problems bubbling to the surface. Perhaps it’s the increased international coverage on the city of more than 6 million people, or maybe things are just getting bad enough for the world to notice. Either way, the country is going through a very tumultuous time, and as they ready for the games, the world hopes that things will go OK as tourists, athletes and media converge in Rio.

Just a few days ago, human body parts washed up on the shore of Copacabana Beach.

Credit: @andresenior / Twitter

The human remains, which have yet to be identified, washed up on the same shore that will be holding the Beach Volleyball competition. The mangled body parts have so far been identified as belonging to a young adult, possibly a woman.

Yeah. Some random human remains are just washing up near future Olympic venues.

giphy-10
Credit: The Monkees / NBC / allreactions / Tumblr

But that isn’t the only thing that has happened on Copacabana Beach before the Olympic Games.

Last month, the organization Rio da Paz staged a protest against Brazil’s growing and violent rape culture on the same beach.

Credit: @womenadvocates / Twitter

Protesters scattered 420 pairs of women’s underwear along the iconic Copacabana Beach and installed photos of women with red hands over their mouths. The protest was bringing attention to the silence associated with rape culture in Brazil. Every year, there are average 50,000 sexual assault incidents against women in Brazil that go vastly unreported.

The water in Rio de Janeiro is still questionable.

Credit: @rodmaia / Twitter

There have been conflicting reports on the viability of water sports taking place in the waters around Rio, but who wants to risk it? Clearly not the U.S. team, which has created special suits for the athletes competing in sailing, rowing and canoeing. The unisuits have been treated with an antimicrobial that will limit the exposure to bacteria in the water. The suits are really all that stand between the U.S. teams and some pretty gnarly illnesses.

Some police officers and firefighters say they don’t have resources to do their jobs.

Credit: @JoeVOrgill / Twitter

Recently, the above photo, which was taken at Rio de Janeiro–Galeão International Airport, went viral. The sign is being held up by police officers and firefighters who are protesting the working conditions and pay rate of emergency service professionals. Some police stations don’t even have toilet paper or fuel for their cars, not to mention stations without running water.

And it isn’t just the police and firefighters. Locals are warning tourists about the lack of medical care available.

Credit: @Cecillia / Tiago Bla / Twitter

Someone left this warning on a highway ramp, which reads, “Welcome, we don’t have hospitals!” They actually do have hospitals, but not all of them are safe. Recently, armed men stormed Souza Aguiar Hospital, one of the five Rio hospitals designated to treat tourists at the Olympics, to free a drug lord.

The Zika virus is still around, and there’s fear of a global crisis.

Credit: @greg_folkers / Twitter

Dr. Amir Attaran, faculty of medicine and faculty of law at the University of Ottawa, wrote a report calling for the Olympics to either be cancelled or postponed over fear that the disease could become a global crisis. The argument he laid out is that Rio de Janeiro, once thought to be minimally impacted by Zika, is actually one of the hardest hit states in Brazil. With an estimated 500,000 people descending onto the city from all over the world, Attaran believes the chances of a global outbreak increase significantly.

“Putting sentimentality aside, clearly the Rio 2016 Games must not proceed.” Dr. Attaran wrote.

Even some of Brazil’s top and most admired athletes are telling people to stay home.

Credit: @rivaldooficial / Instagram

Like Brazilian soccer legend Rivaldo Ferreira, who posted to social media to warn of the violence against women and children that is gripping Rio de Janeiro. In the post above, Rivaldo shares the story of a 17-year-old girl that was murdered in Rio de Janeiro by a group of men. Again, the violence against women in Brazil is seldom talked about.

And, not to mention, even the Olympic flame has seen the contempt of Brazilians. Like this man.

Credit: @MailOnline / Twitter

That’s right. If they aren’t killing a chained jaguar for trying to attack a soldier during a torch lighting ceremony, someone is trying to douse the flame with water. Seriously.


READ: Video Of Teen’s Gang Rape Uploaded To Social Media Sparks Outrage In Brazil

Share this story with all your friends by tapping that share button below!

This Brazilian Father-Son Duo Were Caught Making Fake Lamborghinis And Ferraris But Honestly It’s Kind Of Amazing

Things That Matter

This Brazilian Father-Son Duo Were Caught Making Fake Lamborghinis And Ferraris But Honestly It’s Kind Of Amazing

Brazilian Civil Police

Lamborghini cars are synonymous with extravagance and dreams of wealth that are unattainable for the vast majority of people. Ferraris are also a denominator of wealth and sometimes of a midlife crisis (generally “suffered” by white dudes who need to reaffirm their masculinity by driving a fancy, roaring car).

By the amount of Italian luxury cars one is able to spot in Latin America, you wouldn’t think that the region suffers from constant economic crisis and that vast segments of the population live under the poverty line. However, the fact that some individuals are willing to spend on a car more than some people make in their whole lives speaks to the deep and wide inequalities that exist in the region.

The Brazilian police just revealed that they uncovered a secret operation in which a father-son duo were actually manufacturing fakes! Yes, you read that right. If you thought that making fake Prada and Louis Vuitton handbags that look like the real deal sounded complicated, just wait until you read this story that falls under the category of magical realism.

Lamborghinis are expensive, like REALLY expensive.

If you wonder why someone would go through the trouble of making a fake luxury car, wonder no longer. An authentic Lamborghini costs no less than $200,000 USD. Just think about this: the minimum wage in Brazil is 998 reals a month, which translates into $257.5 USD. Yes, we are talking MONTHLY wage. So you can imagine what owning a Lamborghini in Brazil, even a fake one, means in terms of what some people consider important as a definer of class and social status. 

The Brazilian police made a fantastic discovery in the region of Santa Catarina.

Credit: Brazilian Civil Police

The Brazilian police received complaints from two Italian manufacturers, Lamborghini and Ferrari. Investigations led them to  Santa Catarina, a state in southern Brazil famous for its beaches and nightlife , and about 840 miles southwest of Rio de Janeiro, where they made the arrests. 

They proudly announced the bust on social media, and guess how the cars were being sold.

Credit: PCSC_Oficial / Twitter

The Brazilian police, which is getting a boost from conservative new president Bolsonaro, proudly announced the bust on their Twitter account. As reported by Business Insider, the father-son team also used digital networks for their marketing and distribution: “The shop was offering the cars on social media for $45,000 to $60,000, which is far less than what the genuine exotic supercars cost”. 

The “company”, Autos Fibra, even had an Instagram account!

Credit: autosfibra / Instagram

Descarados! The workshop even had an Instagram account and some YouTube videos, so they were not very secretive about their operation. It makes us think of how copyright and intellectual property are legal matters, of course, but also about how the notions of originality can vary from country to country. In China, for example, making knock-offs is not necessarily seen as a bad thing, as ideas are considered communal rather than individual assets. 

They really thought this through: the level of detail in the replicas is really amazing… in a criminal kind of way.

Credit: Brazilian Civil Police

We are not condoning criminal activity here, but you got to appreciate the craftsmanship in making all this from scratch, from used car parts and without the original blueprints for the vehicles. Only a trained eye would be able to spot the difference at first glance. The Sun UK reports: “Upon raiding the operation, police discovered eight replicas which were in the process of being assembled. Photos captured by police show some of the motors covered in dust and wrapped in plastic covers. The crooks were even fitting fraudulent badges, seats and accessories emblazoned with the iconic Italian brands”. 


Everything was seized in the raid.

Credit: Brazilian Civil Police

When the police arrived they found a well-oiled (pun intended!) operation. As CNN reports: “Tools, molds, fibers and frames used to manufacture the cars were also seized during the raid, police said. The shop was owned by a father and son, who were both arrested and face criminal charges for falsifying commercial property. The pair are thought to be the largest manufacturers of bootleg luxury vehicles in Brazil”. According to the two men who were arrested, they were making “legal prototypes”. Yeah, sure! 

This has happened before elsewhere in the world.

Credit: Brazilian Civil Police

The manufacture of bootleg luxury cars is not unique to Brazil. Nine years ago in 2010, a Thai man was made famous for his ability to build replica Ferraris, Porsches and Aston Martins. Thailand is one of the epicenters of global counterfeit of replicas of luxury goods. 

Social media soon found some humor on the story of the Brazilian fake Italian supercars.

This dude, Peter Malcolm, bluntly claims that he has a Lambo: do we believe him or is he just bluffing? 

These are some cool new words that need to enter the Oxford Dictionary!

Credit: @autotestdrivers / Twitter

This news story led to the creation of some fantastic new words. “Shamborghini” and “Fauxrrari” should definitely enter the dictionary as socially acceptable words. One thing is for certain, this duo, whose identity is concealed due to legal reasons, will go down in the history of counterfeiting as infamous legends. 

And some people lauded the father-son duo as true entrepreneurs, products of Latin American neoliberalism!

Credit: CNN / Facebook

As we said before, we do not condone this criminal activity. The car industry invests millions of dollars in the manufacturing, design and distribution of its products, and hundreds of jobs depend on it. But, as some social media users pointed out on CNN’s Facebook page, we gotta give them some credit. As one Gideon K. Langat pointed out: “They are actually offering a solution to the financially challenged with taste of class”. Well, if not being able to afford an Italian luxury supercar means being “financially challenged” then we all are, aren’t we?

BTW, an American father-son duo built a Lamborghini Aventador using a 3D printer!

Credit: mototrend.com

An American dad and his son were playing video games when they suddenly decided to build a replica of one of the cars featured in the game. As The Sun UK reports: “Sterling Backus was inspired to build the supercar after his son said he liked it when they were playing video game Forza Horizon 3. But as he didn’t have the budget to buy a brand-new Aventador, valued at more than £270,000, he decided to get creative. Despite having no experience, the physicist turned to 3D printing to build the impressive motor. Over the past 18 months, the duo have spent an hour each day painstakingly gluing each panel onto the home-made chassis”. Wow, that is what we call parental dedication. This dude deserves some sort of Father of the Decade award. 

READ: It’s Been Six Months And Brazil’s President Is On A Tear Stripping Rights Away From Every Vulnerable Community

Olympic Gold Medalist Laurie Hernandez Just Bragged So Hard About Her Parents And It’s The Cutest Thing

Entertainment

Olympic Gold Medalist Laurie Hernandez Just Bragged So Hard About Her Parents And It’s The Cutest Thing

@lauriehernandez / Instagram

In 2016, a group of five young athletes went to the Summer Olympics in Rio Janerio with big dreams. There, the Olympians competed to be named the best in the world in their individual and group categories. Nicknamed the “Fab Five,” the women went on to earn silver and gold medals at the international games; proving that the gymnasts were the best of the best.

That same year, Laurie Hernandez — a member of the five — also earned gold on the TV dancing show, “Dancing with the Stars.” The athlete then focused her attention on the literary world. In 2017, she published her New York Times bestselling memoir, “I Got This,” and, in 2018, released her children’s picture book, “She’s Got This.” Hernandez even has a new hosting gig on “American Ninja Warrior” to keep her busy.

It seems that with every challenge she takes on, she succeeds.

Now the gymnast has her eyes set on 2020 and her next shot at Olympic greatness.

Twitter / @LaurieHernandez

Recently, Hernandez sat down with REFINERY 29 and shared her thoughts on power. Specifically, the Olympian explained what makes her feel powerful and what she does in those occasional times when she’s left feeling a little bit powerless.

Unsurprisingly, the athlete explained that she feels most powerful when moving and active. She discussed her workouts, saying:

“Sometimes it’s just gymnastics, but sometimes it’s doing other things, too — like cycling. But just testing how my body works makes me feel most powerful.”

Hernandez went on to elaborate that — to her —  power isn’t just about physical strength. The Latina believes that power also lies in having a strong spirit and mind. She added:

“Gymnastics can be more mental than physical sometimes. So throughout training, going through different tests — whether that’s competing with a lot of people or just with yourself can build your mental strength. So, just learning how to calm myself down; I think that’s pretty powerful.”

The Olympic medalist admitted that it’s her relationship with her parents that brings her back when she’s feeling less than powerful.

Twitter / @Variety

Hernandez explained that even though she and her family are living on two separate coasts, her mom and dad are still the people she goes to when she needs a pep talk. She admitted:

“The first thing I do is reach out to my family and close friends. Sometimes I feel like they know me better than I know myself. Especially my mom and dad; they’ve been supporting me since day one. I feel like they have all the answers. Right now I’m training in California and my family is in New Jersey, so there’s a lot of FaceTime going on.”

Not only do her parents help her when she’s feeling powerless, but they are also her role models when it comes to strength.

Twitter / @OKMagazine

The Latinidad is very family-oriented so we can relate to this. Hernandez doesn’t just look to her parents to revitalize her when she feels powerless. She also considers them her examples when the athlete thinks about what power looks like. After asking if she could pick her mom and dad as her power icons in the interview, Hernandez continued:

“My icons are my parents. After having to raise three kids, they’ve gone through a lot of different struggles. My siblings and I have been able to do so much in our lives because we had a really good foundation. There’s only so much your parents can give you, and yet it feels like our parents really gave us the world.”

She went on to explain that the example that her parents provided her and her siblings early on setting them up for the rest of their lives.

“I think without that foundation and without the things they taught us when we were little, we wouldn’t be where we are today. They’re so kind to other people, and that’s something that I want to follow their lead on. So, they’re my power icons.”

Hernandez ended the interview by saying that her power anthem is Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Know” and it only seems too fitting because it looks like nothing can stop the Latina athlete from achieving her dreams. We will be rooting for more gold for the gymnast in her return back to competition at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

Paid Promoted Stories