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Who embarrassed Brazil at home and abroad


It is part of the popular football culture to boo some of the players, the judges and, finally, some authority who happens to be present. But here, the insults, expletives and obscenities that even children could hear is unprecedented in Brazilian football. The harsh words were directed at the highest authority of the country, President Dilma Rousseff, who was in a back seat of the official gallery.

These shameful insults could only come from a class of people that still has visibility in the country, “people of the very White class A, uneducated and sexist”, commented Ana Thurler, a sociologist with the Center for Feminist Studies.

Those who know something of the history of Brazil, or who have read Gilberto Freyre, Jose Honorio Rodrigues and Sergio Buarque de Hollanda, know how to identify such groups immediately. They are sectors of our elites, the most conservative in the world, who lag well behind in the process of global civilization, as Darcy Ribeiro used to point out; sectors that for 500 years occupied the levers of the State and voraciously benefited from it, denying the rights of citizens in order to guarantee corporative privileges. These groups have not yet rid themselves of the Big Mansion with which they are fixated, nor have they forgotten the pillory were the Black slaves were beaten. Not just their mouths are dirty; they are dirty because their minds are dirty. They are antiquated, and still think within the paradigms of the past, when they lived in luxury and conspicuous consumption, as in the times of Renaissance princes.

In the harsh language of Capistrano de Abreu, our main mulatto historian, the majority of the elite always «castrated and re-castrated, bled and bled again» the Brazilian people. And they are still doing it. With no sense of limits and thus full of arrogance, they believe they can hurl any insults they choose, and disrespect any authority.

What happened demonstrated to Brazilians and to the world the type of elites that still exists in Brazil. They embarrassed us at home and abroad. The people are not ignorant, uneducated or shameless, as they often think and say. Those who are shameless, uncouth, uneducated and ignorant are those who think and say such things about the people. They are mostly the independently wealthy, who live off financial speculation and have millions and millions of dollars abroad, in foreign banks or fiscal havens.

President Dilma put it well: “the people do not react this way; the people are civilized and extremely generous and educated”. The people can boo, and plenty do. But the people do not insult a woman with machista and chulo language, especially not the woman who holds the highest office in the country. With serenity and a palpable sense of dignity, Dilma personally replied to these uncivilized groups: “I have endured almost unbearable physical aggressions and nothing has deterred me from my path”. She was referring to the torture to which she was subjected by agents of the State of terror installed in Brazil beginning in 1968. In the speech she made later on television, she proved that nothing either deters her from her path, or scares her, because she lives with different values and aspires to be in consonance with the greatness of our country.

This shameful act was rejected by the majority of analysts and of those who spoke out publicly. However, the reaction of the two candidates to replace her in the Presidency was lamentable. They used practically the same expressions, in line with the brutish groups: “She is reaping what she sowed” said one. Another implied that she deserves the insults she received. Only the mean spirited and those lacking a sense of dignity could react in this manner. And they are the ones who want to define the destiny of the country. With that spirit! We are tired of mediocre leadership that continues scratching at the soil, like chickens, incapable of taking flight like the eagles we deserve, with a greatness proportionate to the size of our country.

A friend from Munich, who understands Portuguese well, was impacted by the insults, and commented: “not even in Nazi times were the authorities insulted in this manner”. Perhaps he does not know the history we have lived, the type of elite sectors that continue to dominate, and the overbearing manner in which they make themselves heard. They are primarily responsible for keeping us socially, culturally and ethically underdeveloped. They shame us in a manner that we really do not deserve.

Free translation from the Spanish by
Servicios Koinonia,

3 Comentários leave one →
  1. Geraldo Aparecido Sorano permalink
    23/06/2014 18:00

    Por gentileza ecluam o meu nome, obrigado



  2. 23/06/2014 21:30

    What “is unprecedented in Brazilian football” is to be present at a Brazilian stadium the worcest Presidente that this country has ever had.
    You lost Mr. Boff.
    And once more: get out of my page on facebook!



  1. Who embarrassed Brazil at home and abroad | Leonardo Boff | Veja, Brasil

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