Published: 25/02/2019

“The next four years should be about unity and resistance”

“In just one month following the rise to power of the government of Jair Bolsonaro, we have already realized that the LGBTI community will be one of the most affected in terms of rights,” said Gisele Adão, a member of the IUF Latin American Executive Committee. “This is an openly homophobic, racist, chauvinistic, LGBTI-phobic government, and its assumption of power has fueled all kinds of previously veiled prejudices, externalizing and manifesting them in the worst way,” said Gisele.

The hate speech against the LGBTI that Bolsonaro expressed throughout his electoral campaign emboldened his followers and brought them out of the shadows. “Now they feel they have the right to openly exhibit their homophobia, transphobia and lesbophobia everywhere. This is what happened in the area of Campeche, in Florianópolis, where a group of LGBTI friends were vacationing and enjoying a day at the beach but then were attacked, beaten and expelled from the place.”

This incident motivated the organization of a protest on January 27, which brought together various civil society organizations whose mission it is to defend human rights and the right to diversity.

“After you identify yourself as LGTBI, something that is already a complex and often painful process, you cannot go back. We have the right to move freely in public places without being harassed, assaulted or beaten. Public spaces belong to everyone”, said the activist.

The idea of organizing to claim the right to occupation of public spaces was motivated by various acts of violence against LGBTI people.

Ants and ant colony

Gisele reported that on February 24 they would hold another demonstration in response to the words of a retired military officer, who, seeing a lesbian couple on the Playa de los Ingleses, also in Florianópolis, approached and told them that he would not tolerate their presence.

“We are organizing an act to occupy that space. The people of the LGBTI community are citizens who have not only obligations but also rights, including the right to respect. ”  “We are not going to let them take away the successes that we have fought so hard to secure. Let’s fight, let’s resist this advance of hatred. If they get in with one of our ants, they get into the whole ant colony”, Gisele said.

Please find here the original story in Spanish.