Things That Matter

Here’s Why So Many Brazilians Are Protesting One Of The Presidential Candidates

Women from across Brazil took to the streets on Sept. 29 to protest far-right presidential candidate, Jair Bolsonaro. With the vote coming on Sunday, women are protesting against what they say are his misogynistic, homophobic and racist views. The protests, a reflection of the #EleNao (#NotHim) movement that has gathered steam on social media, happened in countless cities nationwide, including Sao Paulo and Brasilia. The protests came the same day that Bolsonaro left from a Sao Paulo hospital where he received treatment after being stabbed during a campaign rally on Sept. 6.

The protesters are using the hashtag #NotHim as the rallying cry to prevent Bolsonaro from taking office in the October election.

Bolsonaro is currently leading polls with around 32 percent of support among voters polled, but also has the highest rejection rate of any candidate. Bolsonaro, a Rio de Janeiro congressman since 1991, has made misogynistic comments in the past, as well as controversial statements on issues relating to race, sexuality and Brazil’s military government. According to Al Jazeera, In 2014, Bolsonaro told fellow congresswomen Maria do Rosario: “I would never rape you because you do not deserve it.”

An estimated 150,000 people turned up at one march.

Organizers say that 150,000 people — mostly women — participated in the march in São Paulo that took over Largo da Batata, a major street in the west of the city. Bolsonaro’s rejection rate among women is 50 percent, according to the latest polling by the Brazilian Institute of Public Opinion and Statistics (IBOPE), and 33 percent among men. Protesters in the streets spoke about the fear and bigotry that Bolsonoro has brought to the political aisle.

“We’re saying to those people who are undecided: Not him,” Selia Figueiredo, a banker in São Paulo told ABC News, who said she worried for her rights as a gay woman if Bolsonaro were to win. They can vote “for anyone else, but not him.”

Bolsonaro’s candidacy has attracted international attention because of the rise of populism in many countries.

Bolsonaro’s campaign has focused on culture-war issues and “traditional” family values that some say would make life harder for minorities. He hasn’t changed his rhetoric during the campaign and has kept up his praise of Brazil’s military. He has also vowed to give police permission to shoot first and ask questions later.

Brazil is in the middle of a moment of intense and unusual turmoil after a tumultuous few years. It has suffered a deep recession and the impeachment of its first female president. Many see this political uproar in Brazil as an example of political extremism and populism similarly to Brexit in the United Kingdom.

Some say Bolsonaro has drawn support from those in Brazil that are tired of the left.

The male-female split in Brazil now can be compared to the divisions in the United States in 2016 when Donald Trump was running. For Brazil, this polarizing moment in politics has brought urgency to what is shaping up to be a pivotal election.

“This is a strong societal reaction to a candidate that is a threat to the entire Brazilian population,” Ivan Valente, a congressman for the left-wing Socialism and Liberty Party told the LA Times. “And it’s because of all of these women coming together to fight for their rights that we have a chance at avoiding taking several steps backward by electing Bolsonaro.”


READ: Protestors Forced Ted Cruz Out Of A Restaurant Demanding To Know His Thoughts On Brett Kavanaugh

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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Blames Indigenous Tribes For Amazon Fires

Things That Matter

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Blames Indigenous Tribes For Amazon Fires

jairmessiasbolsonaro / Instagram

President Jair Bolsonaro is blaming the indigenous community for the fires that raged in the Amazon. The fires set off international outrage as the rainforest faced unprecedented destruction by out of control fires. President Bolsonaro went against the rest of the international community during a speech to the U.N.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro wants the United Nations to know that indigenous people were responsible for the Amazon fires.

In a remote session opening the U.N. General Assembly, President Bolsonaro spoke at length about the indigenous communities starting the fires. He also used the speech to speak out against the criticism his administration is receiving over his environmental policies and his response to Covid. Brazil is currently the second most infected country in the world with the second highest death rate.

The Amazon has experienced increased fires since President Bolsonaro took office.

For the first seven months of 2020, 13,000 sq. km. (5,019 sq. miles) of the Brazilian rainforest have burned. This year saw the second-highest level of fires on a global scale with fires raging across the Amazon, Australia, and the West Coast of the U.S.

President Bolsonaro openly contradicted expert findings to fit his narrative.

President Bolsonaro claims that the humidity of the forest contains the fires. According to President Bolsonaro’s speech, fires in the Amazon only happen in certain areas because of how well the humidity can keep the fires in check.

“The fires practically occur in the same places, on the east side of the forest, where peasants and Indians burn their fields in already deforested areas,” Bolsonaro said.

President Bolsonaro’s speech touches on the environmental record his administration is known for.

The Bolsonaro administration has made dismantling environmental and indigenous rights since taking power. The administration has worked to limit the amount of land available to indigenous people and to open up Amazonian rainforest to miners, loggers, farmers, developers, and other uses that are damaging and contributing to the fires. Deforestation by these industries are largely to blame for the out-of-control wildfires that burned for a very long time in the Brazilian Amazon.

Activists are getting ready to fight for the indigenous community and the rainforest.

“We must denounce this political catastrophe that destroys the environment and our future,” Sonia Guajajara, head of Brazil’s main Indigenous umbrella organization, to NBC News.

READ: Under Bolsonaro, The Brazilian Amazon Has Reached Record-Breaking Levels Of Deforestation

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Two Protesters Killed In Streets Protests Over The Police Shooting Of Jacob Blake

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Two Protesters Killed In Streets Protests Over The Police Shooting Of Jacob Blake

Jacob Blake / Facebook

Updated: August 26, 2020.

Police have attacked and shot another unarmed Black man. This time the victim is 29-year-old Jacob Blake, who is still alive but fighting for his life in serious condition.

Video of the attack – which has since gone viral on social media – shows Blake attempting to get back into his vehicle when he is grabbed by police and shot at least seven times right in the back. The video tells a damning story and protesters have already taken to the streets demanding the police officers responsible be held accountable for their actions.

To many, the attack is further proof that the American policing system is broken and has no value for the lives of Black Americans.

Outrage is growing as video shows police shoot an unarmed Black man in the back at least seven times.

In Wisconsin, police have shot another unarmed Black man – which is leading to widespread protests. The two officers are on leave as state authorities investigate the shooting.

Video circulating on social media shows the victim – Jacob Blake – being shot multiple times in the back as he entered the driver’s side door of his SUV. Currently, Blake is in serious condition fighting for his life.

Attorney Ben Crump, who now represents the Blake family, posted a video of the Sunday evening shooting in Kenosha. The footage spread across social media, sparking protests and leading county officials to institute a curfew that remained in place until Monday morning.

The attack unfolded on a residential street packed with apartment buildings, a block from a city golf course. In the video clip, Blake walks around the front of a gray SUV with two officers a step or two behind him, one with his weapon trained on the man’s back. As Blake enters the driver side door of his car, the nearest officer grabs the tail of his tank top and seven shots are heard. The man entering the car appears to go limp. A sustained car horn blares. A woman nearby jumps up and down, apparently in anguish.

Jeffery Robinson, a deputy legal director with the American Civil Liberties Union, said Blake’s death – along with Floyd’s outside a Minneapolis grocery store, Taylor’s in her own home and Eric Garner’s in front of a New York bodega – demonstrates “the very institution of American policing is rotten at its core.”

Of Blake’s shooting, Robinson said, “With each of the seven shots fired, the police department made their intent clear – they believed they had the right to kill an unarmed Black man for the crime of walking away from them.”

Blake was allegedly trying to break up a domestic dispute between two women when police approached him.

In a tweet, Crump, who represents Floyd’s family, says the man was leaving the scene after “breaking up a fight between two women.”

Officers were called to respond to a domestic disturbance, police said, but it’s unclear who called 911 or what happened before the video recording begins. In a police call, a dispatcher says Blake “isn’t supposed to be there” and that he took the complainant’s keys and refused to leave. The dispatcher later explains she doesn’t have more details because the caller was “uncooperative.”

Blake’s own children were in the vehicle and watched their father get shot by police.

Civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump said Blake’s three young sons were in the car.

“They saw a cop shoot their father,” Crump said on Twitter. “They will be traumatised forever. We cannot let officers violate their duty to PROTECT us. Our kids deserve better!!”

Protests are beginning to pop up across the country, as others continue to mourn the loss of Breonna Taylor and George Floyd – among so many others.

Credit: Guy Smallman / Getty Images

The attack on Jacob Blake comes as demonstrators continue to protest against police violence in American cities, including the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.

The night before Blake’s shooting, protests erupted in Lafayette, Louisiana, after police killed a Black man – Trayford Pellerin, 31 – outside a convenience store.

In Kenosha, a city of 100,000 located between Chicago and Milwaukee, protesters overnight broke windows and sprayed graffiti at a Kenosha County administrative building, according to CNN affiliate WISN. Vehicles at a nearby auto dealership were torched, a fire was started at a county courthouse and officers in tactical gear formed a line to protect a public safety building, the station reported.

Before the sun rose Monday, numerous dump and garbage trucks remained smoldering on the street after being set ablaze. The courthouse and administrative building were closed Monday, and all court hearings for the day are postponed, the county said on Facebook.

Still, unrest continues.

During the third night of protests over the shooting of Blake, two demonstrators were killed after clashes with law enforcement raged outside of an Illinois County Courthouse.

After protesters moved their demonstrations outside of a gas station in Kenosha, Wisconsin shots were fired outside leading to two fatalities, and one person being left with injuries that were not life-threatening. Court documents from Lake County, Ill., reveal that Kyle Rittenhouse, 17, was arrested on Wednesday morning in relation to the shooting. He has been charged with first-degree intentional homicide in the fatal shooting . According to The New York Times, “Antioch is about 30 minutes southwest of Kenosha, just over the Illinois line. More details were expected during a news conference on Wednesday afternoon.”

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