Brazil Needs Intensive Care

ilona szabo 03

Published in Project Syndicate

By Ilona Szabó

Following the recent ouster of Brazil’s popular justice minister, Sergio Moro, the world’s fourth-largest democracy is on the brink of plunging into even deeper instability. In his resignation speech, Moro criticized the president, Jair Bolsonaro, for interfering in the nomination of federal police and their investigations. For many Brazilians, such meddling is all the more galling given that two of Bolsonaro’s sons are under investigation for multiple crimes.

In a rambling, defiant rebuttal on live television, Bolsonaro denied any wrongdoing, then singled me out by name. Labeling me a pro-abortion, pro-gay, gun-regulation advocate, his toxic mix of misogyny, homophobia, and contempt for democracy was on full display for Brazil’s 210 million citizens. The country’s health system is collapsing and its economy is in free fall as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, but its president thinks his most important task is to attack his critics.

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