Bolsonaro’s Brazil tops LGBTQ vacation spots to avoid
For the international LGBTQ community, President Jair Bolsonaro’s Brazil has become a vacation spot to avoid.
This was the assessment of a gay travel website, GayCities, which listed places that LGBTQ people should avoid when planning their next vacation.
Aside from Brazil, known vacation spots like Amsterdam and the Bahamas were also recommended as not safe for LGBTQ travelers.
Bolsonaro’s Brazil is dangerous for LGBTQ people
The current problems in Brazil has led to an increase of gay and trans people. GayCities noted that in 2017, 445 people were reported to have died in anti-LGBTQ hate crimes.
In 2018, 167 trans people were murdered. Marielle Franco, a Rio de Janiero city councilor who advocated for LGBTQ rights, was also assassinated by two ex-police officers.
It doesn’t help that right-wing Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has been very vocal against the LGBTQ community in Brazil.
Bolsonaro had further warned in a press conference in April that he doesn’t want Brazil to become a “gay tourism paradise.”
“If you want to come here and have sex with a woman, go for your life. Brazil can’t be a country of the gay world, of gay tourism. We have families,” he said.
Jair Bolsonaro cancels US trip after pushback
Bolsonaro recently had to cancel a trip to the US due to the controversy generated by his previous anti-LGBTQ statements.
The Brazilian president was supposed to receive an award from the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce. When word of the event got out, backlash spread.
Because of the backlash, sponsors like Delta Air Lines, Bain & Company, and The Financial Times pulled out of the event.
Later on, the Chamber said they would continue with the event without Bolsonaro in attendance.
It should be noted that despite having an anti-LGBTQ president, Brazil still managed to criminalize homophobia when their Supreme Court voted to outlaw discrimination based on sexuality or gender.
Other cities not safe for LGBTQ people
Aside from Brazil, GayCities warned the LGBTQ community not to go to Amsterdam and the Bahamas.
Currently, Amsterdam is battling “overtourism,” given that 18 million people visited them last year and their population is only approximately 800,000.
Because of this, residents warned that tourists– many from cruise ships– were clogging the sidewalks and canals, and disrespecting the brothels in the red light district.
Meanwhile, the Bahamas is a popular travel destination but their long history of discrimination against LGBTQ people has resulted in visitors reporting incidents of bigotry and violence.
Likewise, the local police are reportedly indifferent to crimes against tourists that are perceived to be gay or transgender.