Latin America

Covid-19 threatens to shake democracy around Latin America

With Bolsonaro supporting anti-democratic protests, elections being suspended, and economies tanking, there is justified fear for democracy in Latin America

Pro democracy demonstrators in Tarija, Bolivia. Photo: Charles Bingaman/Shutterstock
Pro-democracy demonstrators in Tarija, Bolivia. Photo: Charles Bingaman/Shutterstock

On Sunday, April 19, Brazil celebrated Armed Forces Day. Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, thousands of supporters of President Jair Bolsonaro organized motorcades in cities across the nation, defending their embattled head of state and praising the military. Some even pleaded for “intervention” from the Armed Forces, asking for a repeat of a notorious decree from the 1964-1985 military dictatorship which dissolved Congress, suspended constitutional rights, and led to the institutionalization of the state-sponsored torture of the regime’s opponents.

As if in blatant disregard for the democracy that elected him president in 2018, Jair Bolsonaro decided to join one of the...

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