A new report indicates that anti-LGBT violence has reached a record high in Brazil.
According to Grupo Gay de Bahia reported, there were 387 homicides attributed to homophobia or anti-gay violence in 2017, a staggering 30% increase from the 327 reported in 2016. (The report also listed 58 suicides in the same time period.)
Brazil is often seen as one of the most gay-friendly places on Earth, with marriage equality, legal recognition for trans people and the world-famous Sao Paulo Pride celebration. But LGBT people in the country are also victims of gruesome violence—shootings, decapitations, strangulations, stonings.
More than 40% of all anti-LGBT violence in the world occurs in Brazil.
Victor Moriyama/Getty Images
"We live off this image as an open and tolerant place," Jandira Queiroz of Amnesty International Brazil told the New York Times in 2016. "[But] homophobic violence has hit crisis levels and it’s getting worse."
Evangelicals have gained political power in recent years, spewing homophobic and transphobic rhetoric on the campaign trail: In 2017, Rio Mayor Marcelo Crivella said homosexuality was caused by botched abortions. In September, a judge overturned Brazil's 18-year ban on conversion therapy.
In September, Brazilian singer Yann released a music video for "Igual," which called for an end to anti-LGBT violence in his homeland. “Unfortunately, most of the world isn’t aware that Brazil is an incredibly dangerous place for the LGBTI+ community,” the singer said.
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