5 disgusting anti-gay rants by Brazil president Jair Bolsonaro ahead of potential reelection

“If your son starts acting a little gay, hit him with some leather"


Words: Attitude; picture: Wiki

Far-right conservative Jair Bolsonaro has been president of Brazil — home to a truly humongous queer population — since January 2019 and is up for re-election this October. But what sort of LGBTQ+ legacy is he leaving behind or — depending on the outcome — continuing?

2002 - The then-Federal Deputy for the Christian Democratic Party (he served in the position from 1991-2018) paradoxically tells Folha de São Paulo newspaper: “I won’t fight against it nor discriminate, but if I see two men kissing each other on the street, I’ll beat them up.”

2010 - Continuing his penchant for eye-wateringly homophobic public statements, Bolsonaro says in an interview on Participação Popular, TV Câmara: “I would be incapable of loving a homosexual child. I’m not going to act like a hypocrite here: I’d rather have my son die in an accident than show up with some moustachioed guy.” He added: “If your son starts acting a little gay, hit him with some leather, and he’ll change his behaviour.”

2019 - On his first day in office, Bolsonaro signs an executive order removing the concerns of LGBTQ+s from consideration by the new human rights ministry.

2020 - In a since-deleted Facebook post, Bolsonaro rejects WHO’s coronavirus advice, before incorrectly describing its education policy guidelines as such (brace yourself for this...): “For children zero to four years old: satisfaction and pleasure when touching their bodies, masturbation.... For children four to six years old: a positive gender identity; enjoyment and pleasure in touching one’s body, masturbation in early childhood; same-sex relationships ... Nine to 12 years old: first sexual experience.”

2020 - The proud vaccine sceptic reportedly taunts members of his staff for wearing masks to protect against Covid-19, calling them “fairies”. More than 670,000 Brazilians have died of coronavirus to date.

Verdict: According to Universidade Federal da Bahia’s anthropological professor Luiz Mott, an LGBTQ+ person was murdered or took their own life every 26 minutes in Brazil in 2020, with trans women of colour particular targets. Is it any wonder, with a hateful man like Bolsonaro in such a position of influence?

The Attitude September/October issue is out now