Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, amidst the campaign for next October’s elections, criticized and mocked on social media the use of inclusive language by Argentine government agencies.
“It saddens me that Argentina has made the use of “neutral language” official. How does that help your people? The only change brought about is that there are now “shortages,” “poverty,” and “unemployment.” May God protect our Argentine brothers and help them out of this difficult situation,” wrote the president in his social networks, with a direct allusion to the economic difficulties in the neighboring country.
– Lamento a oficialização do uso da "linguagem neutra" pela Argentina. No que isso ajuda o seu povo? A única mudança provocada é que agora há "desabastecimente", "pobreze" e "desempregue". Que Deus proteja os nossos irmãos argentinos e os ajude a sair dessa difícil situação.
— Jair M. Bolsonaro (@jairbolsonaro) August 3, 2022
In his message, he insinuated a parallel between Argentine President Alberto Fernández —with whom he maintains a tense relationship and whom he calls a “communist”— and former leftist president Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.
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“In Brazil, the left also seems obsessed with destroying national symbols. In reality, it is only a way to divide the country without respecting its culture and traditions. Respect is won with character, with work, with values, and not with nonsense”, he added.
In his campaign for the upcoming elections, Bolsonaro often cites Argentina, along with Venezuela and Cuba, and more recently Chile and Colombia, as countries that “have fallen into the clutches of communism,” to which he argues Lula would lead Brazil should he prevail in October.
In the middle of last year, the Brazilian government strictly prohibited using neutral language in official communications or any artistic activity that received state funding through a regulation published by the Culture Secretary.