Things That Matter

Authorities In Brazil Are Investigating If Gold Miners Are Responsible For Killing An Uncontacted Amazonian Tribe

BBC / YouTube

A man bragged about killing members of an uncontacted Brazilian tribe for the purpose of mining gold and one person caught the conversation on audiotape.

Brazilian authorities are looking into an alleged massacre of an indigenous tribe near the Brazilian border with Peru and Colombia. According to The Washington Post, Brazilian authorities only know about the incident because a group of gold miners allegedly bragged about the massacre at a bar. They even had pieces of jewelry and tools from the tribe to back up their claim. There were 10 tribe members where the miners were located, and, according to their own admission at the bar, they killed all of them. The Washington Post explains that there isn’t a lot of information about the tribe due to their reclusive nature but there have been steps taken to protect the different tribes in the Brazilian Amazon. However, The New York Times reports that since Michel Temer has become president of Brazil, the amount of funding to protect and monitor indigenous peoples and their lands has been severely slashed. The budget cuts to indigenous affairs has led to the closure of five of the 19 bases responsible for preventing miners and loggers from invading indigenous lands and harming the people living there.

“If these reports are confirmed, [Brazilian President Michel Temer] and his government bear a heavy responsibility for this genocidal attack,” Stephen Corry, the director for Survival International, told The Washington Post. He added: “All these tribes should have had their lands properly recognized and protected years ago — the government’s open support for those who want to open up indigenous territories is utterly shameful, and is setting indigenous rights in Brazil back decades.”

You can read more about the investigation into the killing of this tribe here.

(H/T: The Washington Post)


READ: Los Angeles City Council Votes To Replace Columbus Day With Indigenous Peoples Day

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Hundreds Of Indigenous Women In Brazil Protest Against President Jair Bolsonaro Deforestation Policies

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Hundreds Of Indigenous Women In Brazil Protest Against President Jair Bolsonaro Deforestation Policies

Last week, hundreds of Indigenous women took to the streets to protest against the policies of Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro. According to BBC, indigenous women occupied the building of Brazil’s health ministry in the capital of Brasília and demanded better healthcare for the Indigenous people of the country and called for an end to the destruction of the Amazon. 

It has been reported that about 300 Indigenous women condemned the proposed changes to women’s healthcare and deforestation in Brazil in a peaceful demonstration that lasted over 10 hours. 

The Indigenous women of the country were protesting, according to a tweet by AJ+,  “rollbacks on Indigenous rights and efforts to open up Indigenous lands to minding and agriculture.” AJ+ shared powerful images of Indigenous women coming together to fight for their rights and to “cry out for help.” 

Under the far-right president Bolsonaro, Brazil has backtracked on rights and protections for the Indigenous community. For example, Brazil has let “agriculture ministry make decisions about Indigenous land, blocked any new reservations, [and] proposed to close specialized Indigenous health care offices.” 

“We’ve been left abandoned,” 43-year-old Teresa Cristina Kezonazokere told Correio Braziliense newspaper (in Portuguese, according to BBC). “They treat Indigenous people like animals.”

According to The Associated Press, Bolsonaro’s administration—since taking office in January—has continuously “clashed with environmentalists and others over possibly opening up the Amazon rainforest to development and agribusiness.”

The president wants to open their lands to agriculture and mining. The Globe Post also reports that President Bolsonaro has been warned by experts and activists about such policies that will have “devastating environmental impacts, particularly in worsening climate change.”

However, Bolsonaro continues to dismiss the facts and data showing that the effects of his policies will affect Indigenous land. “Bolsonaro has dismissed the data as lies and sacked the head of the government agency tasked with tracking tree clearing,” The Globe Post reports. 

Further, Brazil’s government wants to make towns and cities responsible for providing medical services to its Indigenous people—putting the pressure on community leaders and local officials. But community leaders fear that their communities lack the “infrastructure” to do this. According to BBC, the federal government is currently in charge of these responsibilities.

Tamikua Faustino of the Pataxó tribe told the AP that “if we don’t stick together, in the near future we’ll be eliminated.”

This surge in deforestation that occurs on Indigenous reserves would essentially eliminate Indigenous folks from the places they inhabit.

In an AJ+ video shared on Twitter, articulation of the Indigenous people of Brazil Sonia Guajajara said: “We will resist because we’ve been here for five centuries and we have a good experience in resisting.” The Indigenous community is being backed by thousands of community members and supports in fighting back against President Bolsonaro’s government.

When Indigenous folks took the streets of Brazil to protest, they didn’t hold back. Many did so carrying bows, arrows, and spears, and the Indigenous women advanced on Congress in Brasilia carrying a large banner that read: “Resist to exist.” Women leading the frontlines are demanding the protection of their land. 

A couple of days after the initial demonstration took place, about 1,500 indigenous women from 110 ethnic groups were expected to join a protest to defend their rights that are under threat under the Bolsonaro administration.

According to BBC, the president has “promised to integrate Indigenous people into the rest of the population and repeatedly questioned the existence of their protected reserves, which are rights guaranteed in the country’s constitution.” The president who favors development over conservation of Indigenous land and reservations has also said that the Indigenous territories are “too big in relation to the number of people who live there,” therefore making it okay to open land that does not belong to him, to agriculture, minding, and essentially destruction. 

Earlier this month, The Globe Post published an opinion piece highlighting the ways in which Bolsonaro and his presidency were destroying the Brazilian Amazon.   

According to data, deforestation in the Amazon region has skyrocketed and there’s no turning back. In June 2019, deforestation showed to be 88 percent higher than the levels of deforestation seen in June 2018. And in the first half of July 2019, it was 68 percent higher than the entire month of the previous year. 

It’s important to note that more than 800,000 Indigenous people live in 450 Indigenous territories across Brazil and most are located in the Amazon region and some communities live totally isolated. 

But the Indigenous women of Brazil are not backing down. In a video posted by AJ+ on Twitter, one of the women can be seen saying that they’re going to defend nature and defend the forest. “We are defending our children’s lives, but also the lives of the people on the other side of the world,” she adds. “Because the air we breathe is the air you breathe.”

Want To Save The Planet? Brazilian President Bolsonaro Suggests Simply Holding Your Poop To Show You Care

Things That Matter

Want To Save The Planet? Brazilian President Bolsonaro Suggests Simply Holding Your Poop To Show You Care

jairmessiasbolsonaro / Instagram / therange.co.uk

If you’re weren’t aware yet, our environment is suffering a major crisis. It isn’t something that if we ignore it will just somehow magically be okay. We are experiencing climate change right now. Weather patterns are off, there are more floods, more wildfires, a lot more earthquakes, and this is just the start of it. This year the United Nations released an extensive report on climate change and say that the next two to three years are a “critical window when many of the policy and investment decisions” and whether world leaders jump on board to help — or not — the result will be the end of us, roughly 10 to 15 years from now, or it could be a turning point.

To get to change, as we said, world leaders have to delegate legislation. All eyes are on world leaders as they have to come up with ways for their own countries to contribute to a plan to save the planet. Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro has one theory about how to improve the environment.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro suggests a way to remedy the environment issue — and obesity all in one snap: if people eat less, they will poop less.

Credit: @Carlos_PT_Lula / Twitter

Come again? Did a world leader just suggest restrict people’s right to go number 2? Yes, he did. During a press conference, Bolsonaro said, “It’s enough to eat a little less. You talk about environmental pollution. It’s enough to poop every other day. That will be better for the whole world.” Hmmm, let’s ponder that for a second. Eat less, poop less, environment fixed. His response was so cut and dry that people could not tell if he was being sarcastic. 

Bolsonaro’s eye-opening response came after a reporter asked him if the country could grow while preserving the environment. It’s a very odd answer, but this is also a man who has, in the past, made “derogatory remarks about women and minority groups,” according to Yahoo News

Would pooping less actually help the environment? 

Credit: Unsplash

We do know that cow poop, and their farts, contribute more toxic fumes than cars. No joke! Due to the 1.5 billion cows on the planet, they contribute to “18 percent of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming, more than cars, planes and all other forms of transport put together,” the Independent reports. 

However, humans also contribute a hefty load (no pun intended) to the world’s trash every time we flush. Slate released an article about a 1999 study that showed “1,188 American homes, toilet flushes accounted for 27 percent of an individual’s daily indoor water consumption—more than washing machines (22 percent) or showers (17 percent).” 

So perhaps pooping less would help somewhat but Bolsonaro is avoiding something a lot more critical to our environment. 

Credit: Unsplash

While going number two every other day would help with less trash and reduce the use of water, it would not be healthy for our own bodies. Pooping every day is part of having a healthy digestive system, and reducing that would just back you up and that would not be good for anyone. 

A healthy bowel system is also dependent on the foods we eat, in particular fruits and vegetables. If our environment continues to decline the way it is, we won’t be able to grow our fruits and vegetables, which therein will make people poop less. Is that Bolsonaro’s ultimate vision?

Bolsonaro, as the leader of Brazil, is in charge of one of the most precious ecosystems in the world: the Amazon.

Credit: Unsplash

Brazil controls 60 percent of the Amazon rainforest, which makes up 40 percent of Earth’s rainforests. The New York Post reports that Bolsonaro’s policies will only further damage the Amazon, which is already in a decline. 

The Economist reports that Bolsonaro isn’t helping nurture nature at all, he’s actually seeking to develop on the sacred forest.

Credit: Unsplash

“The ecological collapse [Bolsonaro’s] policies may precipitate would be felt most acutely within his country’s borders, which encircle 80 percent of the basin—but would go far beyond them, too. It must be averted.”

The climate and the planet are reaching the point of no return when it comes to protecting life. The temperature is rising and places, like El Salvador, are facing a water instability that is forcing migrants to seek safety in another country. If you are concerned about the environment, you have to get involved by contacting your political representatives and making changes in your own life to save the earth.

READ: Brazil’s President Openly Admits That This Super Right-Wing Personality From Virginia Influenced His Politics

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