Eight days before the second round of the municipal elections, the racism it returns to the center of the Brazilian political scene. An Afro-Brazilian citizen was lethally beaten in front of a Carrefour supermarket in the city of Porto Alegre. His death first caused outrage and after the images of the lynching circulated on social networks, protests arrived. The case of João Alberto Freitas, 40, involved two white guards, one of them ex military police, and it took place a few hours before the celebrations of the Black Consciousness day. “There are many cases of violence against black bodies and lives that occur within department stores in Brazil. This type of response reinforces racism rooted in Brazilian society and allows niggas get killed all the time“said the Black Coalition for Rights, which groups 150 organizations and groups, while claiming”urgent measures“to clarify the murder.
Freitas had gone shopping in Carrefur with his wife. The supermarket immediately condemned the events and announced the termination of the contract with the company that was in charge of security. The firm had the participation of several former military policemen. The video that has circulated through social networks shows how one of the aggressors hits the victim in the face while the other grabs his neck. Both are in custody, but their charges are vague despite the evidence. The police delegate in charge of the investigation, Roberta Bertoldo, seemed to throw more gasoline on the fire of fury and told the São Paulo daily Folha that “for the moment” it is not possible to determine exactly whether the crime perpetrated was racially motivated. “It is obvious that there is structural racism“He said. However, he said that, in principle, he handles three hypotheses:” useless motive, impossibility of defending the victim and the cause of death by asphyxia.
Another black man is a victim of brutal racism. In Porto Alegre, that 20th of November will be marked by the terrible murder of this man. Carrefour’s security guards committed the crime, but whoever represents the company is also responsible! pic.twitter.com/e4QSmuPnFk
– Pedro Ruas (@PedroRuasPsol) November 20, 2020
The government’s reaction
“There is no racism in Brazil. I say it because I lived in the US, and there they do. What we have here is inequality, “said the vice president. Hamilton Mourao, on behalf of the ultra-right government. But since the assumption of Jair bolsonaron speeches of intolerance have only proliferated. In fact, Bolsonaro appointed Sergio Camargo as president of the Palmares foundation, created three decades ago by the State to promote the values of Afro-Brazilian culture. And despite having it in his blood, like 55% of the population, Camargo came to describe the black movement as “cursed scum“and” tramps “.
The numbers of intolerance
According to the Brazilian Forum of Public Security (FBSP): almost eight out of 10 people killed by the police are black. His lethality, he maintains, is 21 times greater than that of the North American security force, and it worsened as of 2019. “The Brazilian police model is guided by a prophecy that is always fulfilled: that of the black criminal,” he stated for his Piaui magazine starts. A survey conducted by the Study Group on Violence and Conflict Management of the Federal University of São Carlos indicates that, in São Paulo, blacks are between 2.2 and 2.4 times more likely to be caught in the act than blacks. white. Although they constitute 37% of the state’s population and whites 62%, police approaches do not obey this proportionality. “Do blacks commit more crimes than whites? No. The explanation for this is simple: blacks are the preferred target of interrogations and police records. For the civil and military corporations of the country, the prejudiced popular saying continues: to run with whites is for athletes, to run to a black is to run to a thief.
Threats of death
In this context, the death threats he received from neo-Nazi groups were known Ana Lúcia Martins, the first black woman to be elected councilor in the municipality of Joinville, in the state of Santa Catarina, one of the bastions of the far right.
Martins belongs to the Workers’ Party (PT). “I knew it would not be easy, I would face some resistance from a city that has elected the first black woman inlet and the second decade of the twenty-first century,” said the elected legislator.
The elected councilor Ana Lúcia Martins, from PT de Joinville, is being subjected to violent aggressions on her social networks. Black, retired teacher and public servant, she is the first black woman elected to the city council: https://t.co/izrMJIIUTp
— PT Brasil (@ptbrasil) November 19, 2020