Brazilian president says decision to criminalise homophobia ‘completely wrong’

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06/15/2019

Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro criticised the country’s Supreme Court after they ruled to criminalise homophobia, making it a crime equivalent to racism in Brazil. Bolsonaro told reporters on Friday the Supreme Court was “completely wrong” and had overstepped its powers, moving into legislative territory. Judges who voted for the criminalisation of homophobia felt that in the absence of congressional action on this issue, the court could take it up. Congress has a conservative majority under the influence of the Evangelical Church. Bolsonaro said the court’s decision would hurt homosexuals because an employer would “think twice” before hiring a gay person for fear of being accused of homophobia. Bolsonaro also reiterated his desire to appoint an evangelical judge to the country’s highest court, saying the court needed “balance”. Support from conservative Pentecostal churches helped Bolsonaro to win the election.

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