Note: This past Sunday afternoon, an estimated 600-1,000 people came together in a demonstration/march against the brutal murder of 51- year old musician, Evaldo Rosa dos Santos, on April 7th. Dos Santos was killed when the Brazilian Army shot at his car 80 times (Yes EIGHTY), killing him and wounding two others.
Activists marched on São Paulo most important avenue under the title of “80 tiros em uma família negra, 80 tiros em nós”, meaning ’80 shots at a black family, 80 shots at us’. With MASP museum as it’s starting point, protestors carried a banner that read “Parem de atirar em nós” (stop shooting us), a sign that we’ve unfortunately seen in far too many protest marches in Brazil. The same can be said of the photos of the screams and tears of Luciana Nogueira, Evaldo’s widow, after seeing her husband killed and then buried; another absolutely senseless, unnecessary murder.
Having to report such regular disregard for human life with such frequency, and quite frankly worn out with such regularity, I will stop here and let the photos and the words of Douglas Belchior take over from here.
Black Lives on Sunday Afternoon
Eu me lembro com saudade (I remember with nostalgia)
O tempo que passou (Time passed)
O tempo passa tão depressa (Time passes so quickly)
Mas em mim deixou (But it left in me)
Jovens tardes de domingo (young people Sunday afternoons)
Tantas alegrias (So many joys)
Velhos tempos (The old days)
Belos dias (Beautiful days)
– Roberto Carlos
Tô cansado dessa porra (I’m tired of this shit)
de toda essa bobagem (of all this nonsense)
Alcolismo, vingança treta malandragem (Alcolism, revenge, fuck shit, trickery)
Mãe angustiada filho problemático (Anguished mother troubled son)
Famílias destruídas (Families destroyed)
fins de semana trágicos (tragic weekends)
– Racionais MC’s
By Douglas Belchior; Photos: Rosa Caldeira; Jorge Ferreira; Mídia Ninja; Alma Preta; Ponte Jornalismo; Bianca Santana
As a child I heard a lot of Roberto Carlos. My parents liked it. Memories of a child that, at one time or another, come back. Then I grew up, I studied. I realized and understood why the happy Sunday afternoons of the jovem guarda’s songs, the afternoons in which “Songs used simple forms/To talk about love/Cars and people at a party/Smile and color…” were not at all like the Sunday afternoons then from close to home, on the east side of SP. Racionais MC’s, better than anyone else, explained to us how our weekend works: “Look at that club that gives the time/Look at the pretinho (little black guy) looking at everything from the outside…”
I am 40 years old and since 17 I have participated in protests against police violence and the end of the systematic murder of black people in Brazil. Sometimes I wonder how much of my life I spent there, occupying streets not only on protest days, but day-to-day in classrooms at work in public schools or on weekends in college prep courses. I see the older militants who insist on continuing the fight.
They have been doing this for 30, 40, 50 years, occupying their rest hours between one day and another at work or on holidays or on weekends, Saturday and Sunday afternoons. What destiny is this that not only allows us to live our lives, enjoy Sundays with family, with courtship, with friends or just have a beer in front of the TV on the last day of a futebol championship.
What a sad need this is, to have to share such a rare time that could be of happiness and enjoyment, with the melancholy and sadness of wakes, humanitarian aid and protests. And worse, being thankful for being alive and taking care not to be the next target of some 80 shots on some road.
But what would be the option to this? Live as if we don’t know? Look at the countless bodies and not notice the resemblance? Save your “own skin” and ignore the strong smell of burnt flesh that invades our nostrils every day?
It’s not possible!
On April 14, 2019, more than a thousand people dedicated their Sunday afternoon to the memory of Evaldo, a black man shot in a public square with 80 shots by the Brazilian army. Another day dedicated to denounce to the world the genocidal rulers who lead our country. A country that lives in war.
Obviously, a situation in which the army shoots with 80 shots, a car with a family inside, in the middle of a public road on a Sunday afternoon, just does not draw attention and does not provoke revolt in people with some perverse type of psychopathy. But it must be said that absurd situations happen more often than one imagines.
How do you not remember the 111 shots of the Military Police in a car with 5 black boys, in Rio de Janeiro, in 2015; or the slaughter of Cabula, also in 2015, in Salvador, Bahia, when police lined up 12 youths on a futebol field for the firing squad; or Amarildo, a prisoner tortured and killed by Military Police (MP) in 2013; or Cláudia Silva Ferreira, a black woman, shot by the MP and then dragged for more than 250 meters, on public highway, by a police car; and the many children killed in police actions in Rio and other states; and Marielle Franco, murdered by ex-police militia? That’s just to name a few.
In addition to cases that have repercussions in the media, it must be said that murders of black people themselves are absolutely commonplace in this country.
In the last period, the Brazilian police killed in 5 years more than all the North American police in 30 years of work. Every 23 minutes a young black man is murdered in Brazil. The Brazilian State, directly or indirectly, promotes the genocide of the black population.
Several studies, such as the Atlas da Violência (Atlas da Violência), produced by Ipea and the Fórum Brasileiro de Segurança Pública (Brazilian Forum of Public Security) (FBSP), report that in 2016, Brazil reached the historical mark of 62,517 homicides. This equates to a rate of 30.3 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, which corresponds to 30 times the rate in Europe. When broken down by race/color, genocide is proven: 71.5% of the people who are murdered each year in the country are pretos ou pardos (black or brown).
In the text, numbers are just numbers. To live with it daily is something else.
That is why I am deeply grateful for the company of militants, men and women who, in the most difficult moments, take some into the hands of others to remember and reaffirm our mission and that we are not alone in it. Thank you.
Barring black genocide is a historic task in Brazil and in the world. Our generation will do its part!
Justice to Evaldo Rosa and all the murders of black people, from the first ship full of the enslaved to the car and the body sprayed with 80 shots!
About the protest
Groups linked to black movements met on Sunday (14) on Avenida Paulista, to celebrate the memory on the 7th day of the death of the musician Evaldo dos Santos Rosa, 51, on Sunday (7) in Rio de Janeiro. Rosa was killed when the car he drove was targeted by at least 80 rifle shots fired by Army soldiers.
With the name “80 tiros em uma família negra, 80 tiros em nós!” (80 shots at a black family, 80 shots at us), the act came together in front of the Museu de Arte Assis Chateaubriand (Assis Chateaubriand Museum of Art or Masp).
A huge banner with the phrase “Parem de atirar em nós” (Stop shooting at us) marked the protest. Protesters alternated the microphone to talk about the persecution of blacks in the periphery.
#ContraOGenicidiodoPovoNegroBrasileiro (Against the Genocide of Black Brazilian People)
#UneafroResiste (Uneafro Resists)
#VidasNegrasImportam (Black Lives Matter)
#ParemDeNosMatar (Stop Killing Us)
#ParemDeAtirarEmNós (Stop Shooting At Us)
Source: Douglas Belchior/Carta Capital