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Motorcycle riders symbolize the ineptitude and fascist character of Bolsonarism – 08/06/2022

* Caesar calejon

In almost four years as President of the Republic and, fundamentally, during all his parliamentary activity over the last few decades, Jair Bolsonaro has been unable to present any project in the sense of contributing to the development of Brazil.

Even within the scope of abstractions, that is, merely through ideas that are not explained in an understandable way with regard to applicability, methods, results, etc., Bolsonaro has never collaborated in a productive way in order to advance something significant. Invariably, he presented himself based on hatred, violence, racism, discrimination, misogyny and guided by destructive emotions and reasoning of all kinds.

In this context, the today (6), which takes place in Recifeis another symbol of the ineptitude, the lack of projects for the country on the part of the government and the fascist character of the Bolsonarista administration.

In Brazil, motorcycle riders were started by bolsonarismo last year and, for some reasons, serve the specific purposes of this sociopolitical movement. Among them, I highlight that:

(1) A motorcycle takes up much more physical space than a Bolsonarista militant, which helps immensely to create the illusion that Bolsonaro still has the support of the masses;

(2) Despite having a growing participation of the female public, motorcycles are still mostly used by men, the central public of the current government;

(3) In many ways, they refer to the idea of ​​rebellion (anti-system), strength and virility;

(4) During the motorcycle ride, debates or the exposition of more elaborate ideas are impossible, it is enough to speed up the machine and pose for the photo, which makes Bolsonaro’s life immensely easier, considering the cognitive and cultural difficulties and limitations that the president Brazilian has repeatedly demonstrated.

According to Alessandra Swan, author of the publication entitled “Photographing Mussolini: the making of a political icon”, the motorcycles served perfectly well the ideals of Italian fascism “and Mussolini insisted on being photographed riding the motorcycles or near them, because this conveyed values ​​such as virility and violence”.

Given the idiosyncrasies of each time and culture, Bolsonarism has numerous characteristics in common with Italian fascism. Since assuming the leadership of the Executive, Bolsonaro and members of his cabinet have made direct mentions of various symbols and speeches related to Nazi-fascism in the first half of the last century.

An important difference, however, is the explicit proximity of Bolsonarism to religion. While Mussolini took an anti-clerical stance and declared himself an atheist, conceiving religion as a kind of mental illness that should be addressed by psychiatry, Bolsonaro was elected and remained in power largely because of the pseudo-Christian element of his speech. This Saturday, in addition to the motorcycle rider, the Brazilian president participates in the March for Jesus from Recife.

By bringing these elements together, Bolsonaro continues to advance his religious neo-fascist proposal in order to make debates unfeasible, prevent his complete absence of projects for the country from being noticed more emphatically and still manages, on the other hand, to retain a more dogmatic and reckless portion. of the population with an eye on the vacancy for the second round of elections.

* Cesar Calejon is a journalist, with a specialization in International Relations from FGV and a master’s degree in Social Change and Political Participation at USP (EACH). He is a writer, author of the books The Ascension of Bolsonarismo in Brazil in the 21st Century (Kotter), Perfect Storm: Bolsonarism and the Covid-19 Syndemic in Brazil (Contracurrent) and On Losses and Damage: Denialism, Lawfare and Neofascism in Brazil (Kotter ).

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