Image: The crowd marches towards Banco do Brasil on Brickell Ave, a wealthy enclave of banks, embassies and corporate offices in downtown Miami. All photos by BRRN-Miami.
On the evening of Friday, January 4 left groups in Miami gathered in protest of the inauguration of the new global face of reaction, Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil. A crowd of over 30 gathered at the Torch of Friendship, practicing chants in Portuguese and with members of the supporting organizations, BRRN-Miami, Miami DSA and One Struggle giving brief speeches on the need to oppose Bolsonaro and stand in solidarity with the people and social movements of Brazil.
The march proceeded over a mile chanting anti-Bolsonaro slogans as it proceeded down Brickell Ave, a wealthy enclave of banks, embassies and corporate offices in downtown Miami. Brickell Ave is also home (or second home) to many wealthy Brazilian oligarchs whose wealth has helped fuel the process of gentrification and displacement in Miami. The march then stopped at Banco do Brasil, a Brazilian state owned bank, where participants chalked over a 100 different anti-Bolsonaro slogans on the sidewalk and cement surrounding the entrance and sang an anti-Bolsonaro version of “Bella Ciao” as well as in Spanish.
Below is the statement of march organizers BRRN-Miami and photos of the protest.
Why Are We Marching:
Jair Bolsonaro was officially inaugurated as Brazil’s president on January 1st, pledging to “liberate” the country from “socialism.” Bolsonaro came to power by embracing overt misogyny, racism, homophobia, and transphobia. His supporters have harassed or attacked organizers and journalists, and Bolsonaro has expressed fascist values.
But his rise to power is just a symptom of the twin evils of capitalism and authoritarianism. Bolsonaro represents a coalition including investors who want to slash education, pensions, and other basic services, and supporters of Brazil’s former military dictatorship who would give police and the military free rein even as their violence increasingly targets working-class women of color- as seen in the extrajudicial killing of queer socialist and feminist Marielle Franco in Rio in March 2018.
We march tonight to show our opposition to everything Bolsonaro represents, and the system that gave birth to him. We march to defend the people of Brazil and the world from indigenous folx who’ve been threatened with genocide and replacement to the LGBTQ Community whose livelihoods and dignity have been under siege by this President’s words and actions for decades. We march because this is also a local issue, with gentrification in Miami being partially fueled by money from corrupt politicians and investors who support Bolsonaro.
We march to build an international and internationalist movement from below to combat fascism, to build a new world – a world where people collectively control their own workplaces, communities and land and where all basic needs are met. A world where power and participation flow from the bottom upwards and society is organized for people’s aspirations, passions, and needs rather than profit, white supremacy and racial domination, patriarchy, or imperialism; and where we live sustainably with the planet.
For more back ground on the situation in Brazil and analysis we recommend “The Claws of Empire, the Rise of Fascism: Brazilian Anarchist Statement on Bolsonaro” and “Dispatch on Brazil: Interview with Hugo Souza.” Additional content on Brazil here.
Singing “Bella Ciao,” the anti-Bolsonaro Portuguese version and in Spanish. See video below.