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Brazil: Affirmative Action Gets Green Light

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Brazil’s Supreme Court on April 27 voted unanimously to permit a quota system that would favor Afro-descendants in entering universities, ending an eight-year legal battle.

Brazil has the largest black population in the world outside of Africa, but years of marginalization and exclusion in the 124 years since the country outlawed slavery has kept this population on the sidelines.

The 10-judge court was responding to a 2009 complaint filed by the right-wing Democrats or DEMs party that sought to block a program by the University of Brasilia instated in 2004 that reserved 20 percent of its seats for black students.

“The racial oppression of Brazilian slave society left scars that are reflected by the differentiation of Afro-descendants,” said the Justice. “The injustice of the system is absolutely intolerable. Long live the Afro-descendant nation!”

More than half of Brazil’s population of 191 million people is black. More than 70 percent of Brazil’s 98 public universities have race-based quotas in place. Rio de Janeiro State University was the first one to apply them in 2001.

Justice Joaquim Barbosa, the only Afro-descendant in the court, said that the debated measures taken by the University of Brasilia are aiming to “combat not only the flagrant manifestations of discrimination but also the discrimination that is absolutely ingrained in the society and so much so that people don’t even realize it.”



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Latinamerica Press

Latinamerica Press

Latinamerica Press is a product of Comunicaciones Aliadas, a non-profit, non-governmental organization based in Lima, Peru, specializing in the production of information and analysis about events across Latin America and the Caribbean with a focus on rights, while strengthening the communications skills of local social leaders.

3 thoughts on “Brazil: Affirmative Action Gets Green Light

  • Avatar
    May 17, 2012 at 12:04 pm
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    I think one must be careful with policies relating to affirmative action [AA]. The decision to implement AA is good. But there must be a time limit for this to end otherwise it will continue indefinitely which will not be a good thing for Afro-descendents who become dependent on it perpetually and think that it is of right which will cause disaffection amongst the others. The other problem will be corruption. This will creep in and what happens here is that there will be a division formed within the Afro-descendents that will cause much dissatisfaction. In Malaysia for example-AA “awards” are given to cronies of the Malay/Muslim ruling party which now has upset the millions of Malay/Muslim who now consider them as 2nd class citizens.

    The point I make here is that there must be (a) a specific class of people who will be given this benefit and (b) there must be a time frame-say 10 years and it should end unlike what is happening in the USA which African Americans feel that it is there right-this has become a handicap and instead of helping it has put them on “crutches” which is a bad thing.

    Reply
  • Avatar
    May 17, 2012 at 12:22 pm
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    Interesting. And how are Afro-descended defined? Half of Brazil looks mixed with the original population. Are Blacks to be defined as the ones who dress up like American Black rappers?

    Reply
  • Avatar
    May 17, 2012 at 12:41 pm
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    ” In the early-mid 1990’s, Democrats (Clinton, Reno, Holder) forced affirmative action (standardless) lending to financially unqualified Democrats by abusing DOJ and HUD to threaten lawsuits, block mergers, etc. against lenders under FLA 1968, ECOA 1974 & CRA 1977. When that didn’t work fast enough, Clinton installed his budget director Raines as CEO of FNMA from 1998-2004 to eliminate underwriting rules (to guarantee banks that FNMA would underwrite, acquire, repackage and sell loans for unqualified Democrats) to cause affirmative action lending en masse, imperiling trillions in private property to serve Democrats’ national socialist goals of affirmative action lending. The massive expansion of affirmative action buyers caused massive fraud, massive defaults and massive property value bubble that fully imploded in 2008. Now Democrats are forcing banks to give away more wealth to Democrats that the banks will make up in charges to responsible people”

    Brazil, barely out of the “developing” stage is copying the methods which destroyed America’s “Only Superpower status”

    No wonder the Chinese are laughing.

    Reply

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