Brazilian Military Regime Anniversary: Why It Is Important Not To Forget This Date

Between the years 1964 and 1985, Brazil went through the period of the military regime. The time is marked in history by the practice of censorship, annulment of constitutional rights, extinction of democracy, suppression of freedom of expression and political persecution of young, militant against repression, considered subversive for being against the authoritarian government.

Although the dictatorship has marked the history of the country and several families that have had their relatives brutally tortured, murdered or even missing, many people still fall into the trap of saying that it never existed. The denial of the brazilian people is due to the incompetence of the authorities to assume the past of Brazil and punish those who should never have been amnesty.

Rio de Janeiro, 1968 | Image Source: Arquivo Nacional / Correio da Manhã / El País 

What differentiates Brazil from countries that have suffered remarkable historical traumas is the fact that those places try to recognize their mistakes from the past and use the facts as examples of what should not be repeated.

Germany is one of the countries with deep scars when it comes to persecutions and killings. However, the concentration camps are open for visitation as a way of understanding the error, such as The House of Anne Frank, in the Netherlands, one of the monuments in tribute to the victims of the Holocaust and the shame when tourists speak words like "Hitler" show signs of a society who is learning and is ashamed of his own history.

2018 Brazil truck drivers' strike | Image Source: Clara Serranoni 

The opposite is happening to brazilians. Some citizens still refer to the period as a 'revolution' and elect Jair Bolsonaro for believing that, in his words, there is honesty and loyalty to the people and that their opponents act in a subversive way.

How to teach a person about their own history if the current president of the Democratic Republic of Brazil insists on denying it? This is why the date should be remembered, so that there is no way a backward event like this would repeat 55 years later.

It is necessary to open the eyes of a blind and needy population of hope, what happens in Brazil today could be similar to what happened in 1964. Young activists and militants like Marielle Franco become victims of censorship in the worst possible way. Journalists and university professors like Jean Wyllys end up on self-exiles from their homes because they can not exercise their right of free expression and the people end up democratically choosing the one that will repress themselves the most.

Although it seems that we sink more and more each day in the chaos of the absence of memory, we still find hope in some social movements. Those who dedicate part of their time to build a more just and egalitarian society, in which the most needy population has access to fundamental basic rights, often not guaranteed by the State, are those that should in fact be valued by the brazilian people.

While the president elect associates the activism of social movements with ideas such as leftist, petism and communism, the indigenous peoples, women, black people, handicapped and the needy population signs a note of repudiation against the authoritarian tide that runs through the country and tries, once again, to fight for the rights that are still denied to us in 2019.