We are living in times that the attentions of the world are on us, Brazillians. As I've heard in "Goodbye, Lenin!", once upon a time, Berlin was the centre of the planet, with all the media turned at their direction, and all the globe wanted to see the progression of the fused city after years of political segregation, with their National Football Team was making its way to the World Cup Final as an addictional. As destiny had it, now we, Rio de Janeiro, seem to be at the centre of the world as well. We're the leading economy of the Bricks, the leading economy of Latin America and the biggest economy of the Southern Hemisphere. And now, we are hosting a "test event" for the World Cup in 2014: the Confederation Cup, which consists of a football competetion between eight nations. This is not so much much a reason to a scandal: even us Brazillians treat it like a kids' drawing in the refrigerator. But to some people, this is the opportunity to have their voices heard. Rememeber when I talked about that group of protesters in the 7th of September, who used the situation to protest against the demolition of their school? It also reminds me of the last World Cup in South Africa, in which I hard of a protest right after an important game: South Africa was trying to - cowardly - pass the impression it was not the country of the Apartheid by any form, when racism and racial segregation are still very molten within the mentality of several South-africans. In here, things are getting to the point that even during a match of Nigeria vs Tahiti in Belo Horizonte, bombs exploded outside the stadium.
As I have said in here before, Brazillians are a very conformist Nation. Rare are the moments that they pack theu stuff and head for the streets, like in the memorable "Directs Now!" Moviment from 1985, which put a much needed end to the Millitary Dictadure. That dictadure lasted almost twenty years in Brazil's History. But it could have lasted waaay shorter if our people were not so conformist. Just for a reminder, the dictadure was already on a stage of
downfall by the 80's, and the popular moviments simply pushed an old dying tyrant down the stairs. Of course that it was a huge progretion, but even if the enemy had been Adolf Hittler himself, he couldn't do a lot if he had an entire nation or at least a significant portion of it against
him, every day, every night: remember the Arab Spring
? Brazillians are not fond of protesting, but as the Cup has come, and people finally come to the realization more of the public funds were expanded on the Stadiums than it would ever be in public education, health or security, people on the Facebook got revolted. And rather than ranting in the internet, they took their rants to the streets. At first, this seems to be wonderful, right? In several major cities of the country, the people are expressing their opinions! This is what people like me has been asking for, right?
Not quite: unfortunely, Brazillians are Brazillians, and it is part of or very culture to lose our minds with ease, especially when there is something of a fair justification in the story. Most of these protests come with the promisse of being peaciful... but they eventually end in violence, in buldings destroyed, and with regular people less and less supportive of these marches, once they are wrapped with this violence. Workers that see their business destroyed, their cars burnt, their sources of income at pieces. History buldings demaged. Streets on fire. How anyone will be on favor of more marches like those? What is the excuse? The ends justifies the means? Look, for those who don't quite know the story, here it is: the price for the bus ticket has been, through the years, growing up very fast. Back in my days, a ticket costed around R$ 1,50. Now, it's R$ 2,95. It's all part of the inflation that keeps on growing and growing. To add insult to injury, major Eduardo Paes - who is in his second term and doesn't seem to give two sh*ts about his public image anymore - banned the alternative public transports - the vans - from the South Zone, forcing people to only thanking the buss. "It will be the better for transit", they said. But in the end, they only had private interests in this decision, for the vans were taking the gold of several bus companies. Paes started to take some controversial ideas that he would never take on his first term. But in the end, the bus prices is something national, something that affects the whole country: for people who doesn't have a car, a moto or a transatlantic, 40 cents every day means a lot. But then, things got to big to be centred on a raise of 20 cents.
The protests started as a way of opposing this, but evetualy, new themes started to pop up: the price of the World Cup, the living conditions, the social segregation... all of this is being taken to the streets. But once again, among the people who hate violence, there are people who sees such opportunities to pratice in real life all those things they saw on movies and videogames. They see this opportunity to release the animal inside, and to cloak themselves with this "ends and means" speech. They loot, they destroy, they define the autorities... and some of them couldn't care less for the cause. They are just there to break sh*t up. And you know what seems to be the worst part? The protesters who supposedly "hate" violence, who are usually backed up by left-wing posers from small-potatoes parties wanting some publicity stunts, actually support them. They don't have the courage to go against public authority and public patrimony. So in order to have their words propely heard (since you know, no-one in this country listen to civilized actions, since this is smug stuff), they need those criminals, those hooligans, those thugs destroying things. One thing that I have noticed is that those things happen almost in the end of a march. It is when the squares are empty that the thugs have the "authorization" to act. They're not so much sticking it to The Man as they're showing how bad*sses they are, or how nobody messes with them, like criminal factions. It's like the Bill Maher story of some people joining the army just to have an excuse of killing people: in here, people join these marches as an excuse to see the streets on fire.
A chance. It's all those thugs need. A chance. With the blessings of those who love peace and hate violence.