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December 04, 2012


Ian  Nieves

While I understand the impulse to adopt Political Correctness, I cringe at the idea of limiting Freedom of Speech, particularly in a country that has fought so hard to free itself from Fascist oppression. Perhaps a better solution to combating odious and entrenched Racist, Misogynistic and Homophobic comic content is for the groups thus victimized to take more active parts in the Brazilian comedy scene. The States offer a great example. A few short decades ago, demeaning Blackface acts were staple in Yankee comedy. Since the 70's, American American comedians like Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, Chris Rock and Will Smith have made anti-racist acts staples of their routines, transforming a medium that was historically a prime means of ingraining Racism into a potent force for fighting it. Similarly, many women and gay American comedians have laid siege to Misogyny and Homophobia. Rather than muzzling speech, Brazil would do better to follow its gringo neighbor and flood its comedy with legions of Preto, Pardo, Indio, Female and Gay comics who raise raucous laughs as they attack injustice in the raw.


Hi --

Thanks for the tip.
There's no free speech in Brazil. Really. It's becoming a mental death trap, something straight out of Kafka, with courts deciding if a joke, an artwork or an op-ed was "offensive" or not. Comedians in Brazil are just unfunny...or absolutely infantile and just...dumb.
You might also enjoy this debate, with the late Christopher Hitchens and others:

Freedom of expression must include the license to offend

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