The Federation of Industries of the State of Minas Gerais (Fiemg) released on Wednesday (1) on its website a public note, called Manifesto pela Liberdade, in which it endorses the pocket choir against the Federal Supreme Court (STF). The note would have been shared by the President of the Republic himself in WhastApp groups.
More than 200 businessmen released a manifest opposite to Fiemg’s
In the assessment of Professor Juarez Guimarães, from the Department of Political Science at the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG), the Fiemg score is “scandalous” and the fact “is one of the most shameful pages” of the entity. “I think that note is historically disgraceful from every point of view. Firstly, because it seems to take a step further in supporting an attempt to provoke a coup d’état through violent demonstrations sponsored by the Bolsonaro government, which is in its greatest crisis and unpopularity moment”, he comments.
The note goes in the opposite direction of the positioning of other national and mining business entities. The Federation of Industries of the State of São Paulo (Fiesp) has signaled the defense of harmony between the powers, a movement led by the organization’s president, Paulo Skaf. The manifesto, which would have been signed by 200 entities, ended up having its release postponed.
“It is clear that it is up to democratic and popular oppositions to defend democracy”
In fact, the adhesion of the Brazilian Federation of Banks (Febraban) to the Fiesp’s pacifying manifesto generated an internal crisis, with the threat of the exit of Banco do Brasil and Caixa Econômica Federal from the federation.
Faced with this context, for researcher Juarez Guimarães, it remains to be seen how representative Fiemg’s note is in Minas Gerais business and, moreover, how the government of Romeu Zema (Novo) will react to the entity’s position. “In various circumstances we saw the Zema government support Bolsonaro, seeking a special relationship with him”, he comments.
“It is clear that it is up to democratic and popular oppositions in our State, progressive sectors, social movements and political representations of the left to defend democracy in this very dramatic and difficult moment”, he adds.
::Watch: What do the Pocketist demonstrations signal for Brazilian democracy?::
A demonstration against the Bolsonaro government is scheduled for September 7 across the country, in the traditional Grito dos Excluídos. In Belo Horizonte, the action is scheduled for 10:00 am, at Praça da Liberdade.
Minas Gerais business
Fiemg’s pocketbook manifesto also goes in the opposite direction of the Minas Trade and Business Association (ACMinas), which launched, on Wednesday (1), a note in defense of democracy that articulates more than 200 businessmen and leaders from Minas Gerais. The document, called the Second Manifesto of the Mineiros to the Brazilian People, calls for unity of the Brazilian people and rejects the rupture by arms.
“The rupture by weapons, by physical confrontation in the streets, is synonymous with anarchy, which is antonymous with everything that a serene, citizen and constructive journey can comprehend. Democracy cannot be threatened, rather, it must be strengthened and improved”, says the text.
In addition, the manifesto defends a “true” state reform and affirms the need to “build (in fact, rebuild) a project of Nation for Brazil, giving new meaning to patriotism, in order to make the Brazilian people a happier people”. The expectation is that the document will be delivered to the authorities on September 7th.
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On their social networks, former federal deputy for PCdoB Jô Moraes compared the Minas Gerais business manifesto with that of Fiemg. “More than 200 Minas Gerais businessmen launch a manifest that rejects the rupture by arms and preaches the need for state reform. Fiemg, alone, releases a manifest against exacerbation of the STF’s interpretation in the inquiry against fake news. And the feeling of mining?”, he wrote.
Journalists and audiovisual professionals reject Fiemg
On Thursday (2), the Minas Gerais Audiovisual Industry Union (Sindav), the Zona da Mata MG Audiovisual Hub Development Agency, the Festivals Forum, Brasil Audiovisual Independente (Bravi) and the NGO Contacto, entities members of Fiemg’s Chamber of Communication and Audiovisual Industry launched a repudiation note to the federation’s statement. In the text, these organizations emphasize that they were not consulted or even communicated about the content of the Fiemg note.
“We do not agree with the ideas expressed in the manifesto, as we do not consider freedom of expression the threats against the STF and its members and the criminal activity of Fake News networks, which are indeed antagonistic to the fundamental pillars of a Democratic Rule of Law. firm defense of democracy, our institutions, the Brazilian Constitution and true freedom of expression, a fundamental principle of our professional activity,” says the text.
Minas Gerais journalists also took a stand against Fiemg’s statement, considered “disastrous”, for confusing freedom of expression with fake news and with the spread of hatred. “Fiemg’s position shames Minas Gerais and its three-hundred-year history of resistance to oppression of any kind and which has always exalted freedom as a fundamental value of its civic, political and citizenship education”, says the text.
Furthermore, the text signed by Casa do Jornalista states that the Fiemg note “reveals a retrograde, crude and primary vision of the Brazilian historical moment” and that all free institutions, social organizations, unions, universities, thinkers, artists express their concern with the escalation of authoritarianism, of a clear coup and anti-democratic character.
What does the Fiemg manifesto say
The text criticizes the positions of the Judiciary, “which end up harming, in a dangerous way, the restriction of freedom of expression in the country. We are talking about investigations and the possibility of demonetizing news sites and portals that are being accused in investigations against fake news”.
Still, the manifesto says that Fiemg “hopes that the exacerbation of this interpretation by the Supreme Court (STF) will be revised” and quotes Minister Marco Aurélio Mello who would have recalled a speech by professor Adilson Abreu Dallari, who states that the ” Supreme is not synonymous with absolute”.
Source: BoF Minas Gerais
Edition: Elis Almeida