Last weekend, a video by singer Claudia Leitte invaded thetimelines of thousands of Brazilians on social networks, viralizing the enough for the artist’s name to appear at the top of Google searches and among the most mentioned terms on Twitter. This time, however, it was not a new music video, nor a single unpublished, but a montage that compared two moments: the sold out show that starred in the capital of São Paulo, day
The contradiction did not go unnoticed. Federal deputies BiaKicis, Eduardo Bolsonaro and the minister of Communications,Fábio Faria, were some of the prominent public figures who helped to promote the video.
The event would have all the characteristics of a simple satirical meme to generate engagement on the internet, but it ended up going beyond that and boosted a campaign started days before, symbolically represented by the hashtag #CancelaoCarnaval, carried out, above all, by right part.
If the objective of the campaign can be easily identified – the cancellation of carnival events, scheduled to be resumed in 2021 -, less obvious are his real motivations, which go far beyond the health concern with the new variant of the coronavirus that haunts Europeans.
Variantômicronand increase in cases in Europe
Since last month,Europehas registered substantial increase in the number of infected people, although most of the population on the continent is already fully immunized. So far, according to public health authorities, the main suspicion of being the cause of the new wave would be the so-called omicron variant, of South African origin, apparently more contagious than the previous versions. The situation led the countries of the European Union to suspend flights from seven countries located in the south of the African continent. Germany even tightened restrictions on the unvaccinated, limiting their access to bars, restaurants, nightclubs and other closed places.
Asked last Thursday (26) about this new advance of COVID-18 , President Bolsonaro said: “For me, there would be no carnival”. The phrase was said in an interview with Rádio Sociedade da Bahia, with the addition of the reminder that “according to the Federal Supreme Court, it is the governors and mayors who decide”, in reference to the STF decision that gave autonomy to states and municipalities to decide on actions to combat the pandemic.
Although in the same interview Bolsonaro criticized the possibility of the return of thelockdown in Brazilian cities, the phrase about the carnival called the attention of analysts and made headlines in several newspapers, serving as a trigger for his followers to start promoting the hashtag #CancelaoCarnaval on the internet.
If at first sight the mobilization for the cancellation of the event seemed contradictory with the positions adopted by the right part during the pandemic, the reactions to Claudia Leitte’s concert in São Paulo – governed state by his rival, João Doria – stated that the concern with the risk of contamination in this event was not, exactly, the core of the matter. From a political point of view, the chance to wear down an opponent, exposing a contradiction, was unmissable.
Why Claudia Leitte went in the crosshairs
In the editing of the video that went viral, parallel to the images of the euphoric crowd dancing in his show, without a mask and, obviously, without any distancing, another filming, older, was included, in which the singer says that “the fact that people do not wear masks is indignant, they continue to gather, promoting agglomerations and inciting agglomerations”. Claudia Leitte concludes the reasoning by stating: “That kills. It is proved”.
Two days before the controversial show, another old video by Claudia Leitte, recorded in 2019, had also gone viral on social media. In it, who appears dancing with the artist on stage and singingmusic“WeAre Carnaval”is an animated governor João Doria. On the morning of the day 26, Doria himself retweeted the video: “I have fun with these things,” said Bolsonaro’s visceral enemy, probably without imagining that he was linking himself to the negative repercussions of the show in the city of São Paulo, scheduled to take place the following day.