Thousands of Brazilian women took to the streets on Saturday to protest against the far-right presidential candidate, Jair Bolsonaro. Women in the country are opposing Bolsonaro because of his misogynistic, racist, and homophobic comments, per Reuters.
The 63-year-old presidential candidate has angered women and civil society members from time to time by making derogatory remarks toward women, which include mocking women as “idiots” and “tramps,” justifying the gender pay gap, and making rape jokes, per the Guardian.
The protest was organized via social media under the hashtags “EleNao” (Not Him), “MulheresUnidasContraBolsonaro” (Women United Against Bolsonaro), and “EPelaVidadasMulheres” (For Women’s Life).
The protesters mobilized through a Facebook group named Women United Against Bolsonaro, which was created on August 30, but soon attracted more than 2.4 million women, as reported by the Brazilian news outlet, Estadão.
According to the report, the Facebook group was attacked by hackers several times, after which the group’s privacy was changed to “secret.”
Despite that, the group was joined by an estimated 10,000 women on a daily basis, per Latin American news channel, teleSUR.
The protests erupted in various cities of Brazil, including Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro, and Sao Paulo, at around 6 p.m. (GMT) on Saturday. The demonstrations were predominately festive in nature as participants danced, sang and shouted, “Not him.” However, the report by Reuters stated that some angry protesters started small fires and banged drums in the center of Rio.
During the protests, journalists and Twitterati tweeted photos using the aforementioned hashtags.
#EPelaVidadasMulheres was one of the hashtags trending during the day in Brazil, as protests took place in 28 cities across the country.
There were also pro-Bolsonaro demonstration in 14 other cities. pic.twitter.com/c9wKpH6spo
— Mia Alberti (@mialberti) September 29, 2018
Per a report by France24, protests also took place in other cities of the world, including Paris, Budapest, Beirut, and Dublin.
— i αɱ, ɓeer (@mostkindness) September 30, 2018
The Queen of Pop and feminist icon Madonna showed solidarity with the Not Him movement in Brazil, and posted an Instagram story with a strong photograph using the hashtag EleNao and EndFascism on Friday.
Ahead of the October 7 presidential election in the country, Jair Bolsonaro is currently leading the polls with around 28 percent of support among voters polled. On September 6, Bolsonaro was stabbed during an electioneering campaign in Juiz de Fora.
The assailant, identified as Adélio Bispo de Oliveira, was immediately arrested. A police spokesperson told local media that the man was beaten up by Bolsonaro supporters prior to his arrest, per the Guardian.
The presidential candidate was discharged from the hospital after 21 days. A protester told the Guardian that most participants in the protest condemn the physical attack on Bolsonaro, but they don’t want to support him for his “anti-democratic positions on women’s rights.”