Brazil covid-19 crisis and political inertia: 15,633 deaths and 14,919 new cases
Kanako Mita and Lee Jay Walker
Modern Tokyo Times
The international coronavirus crisis (Covid-19) is notable by the deep political divisions in America and Brazil. In turn, people on both extremes are being polarized by political elites. However, in Brazil, the polarization is even deeper because the current leader is still downplaying the crisis.
Of course, the economic angle needs to be solved in all nations. Hence, locking down society depends on the economic clout of each nation.
For Brazil, issues related to social inequality, absolute poverty, a barely surviving living wage for many, limited welfare support, and other important factors, all equate to major problems. Therefore, for poorer members of society in nations like Brazil, the crisis is even more severe for the disadvantaged.
President Jair Bolsonaro of Brazil is especially focused on the economic angle. Yet no methodology to tackle the coronavirus seems to exist. If Bolsonaro fused the economic angle along with containing the coronavirus crisis, then more people would understand. However, Bolsonaro seems aloof and indignant towards growing deaths and infections in Brazil.
When questioned about the death toll passing 5,000 – now more than 15,000 people have died – he replied with no compassion. Instead, Bolsonaro said, “So what? I’m sorry. What do you want me to do?”
The New York Times reports, “Experts do not expect the epidemic to peak in Brazil for several more weeks. As of early May, it had the highest contagion rate of 54 countries studied by Imperial London College, which also found that existing containment measures in Brazil have failed to put transmission on a downward trajectory.”
Alarmingly for Brazil, political inertia is at the heart of the Bolsonaro administration. Hence, two health ministers have left their positions in the last month at a time when clarity is needed.
Reuters reports, “Bolsonaro has been fiercely critical of the orders by many of Brazil’s state governors for strict social isolation and quarantine to combat the spread of the virus, including the closure of schools, shops and restaurants.”
It appears that the death toll will keep on flowing and that political and social tensions will increase based on the policies of Bolsonaro.
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