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Picture of gay couple kissing outrages homophobes in Brazil

Claire Toureille August 3, 2018

Homophobes are having a hard time accepting the picture of a gay couple kissing, proudly displayed at a photography stand at a popular touristic site in Brazil.

Fotográfica is a photography company that offers to take pictures of tourists visiting the Sugarloaf Mountain near Rio de Janeiro, using a green screen to generate different background images.

The picture of the gay couple kissing in front of a panoramic view of Rio is one of the many displayed as an example of what the end result may look like, but several people have complained about it, Fotográfica manager Pedro Lotti told the Intercept.

Lotti said the choice to display the picture of the same-sex kiss was deliberate. “Roughly 70 percent of our employees here are gay, and they experience serious problems here because of this,” he explained.

After the statue of Christ the Redeemer, Sugarloaf Mountain is the Rio’s second most-visited site, with more than a million visitors coming each year.

Lotti explained that most same-sex couples who visited Sugarloaf were afraid of kissing, touching or expressing any form of PDA while being photographed.

“Always, at the entrance, I noticed that same-sex couples were cautious or scared to touch, hold hands, or kiss for their photos,” he said. “And they would walk to the photo area, and then walk away, and return various times, obviously afraid of how people would react.”

Lotti added he wanted to create a safe space for LGBT+ vacationers, where they could show each other affections without feeling judged or threatened.

 

A man dances during the Gay Pride Parade at Copacabana beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on November 19, 2017 ( LEO CORREA/AFP/Getty)

The picture however gathered negative comments from visitors. The main reason for their discontent seems to be that children can clearly see the photograph.

“They typically complain, specifically, that the photo is in the line of vision for children, and are angry that their kids specifically have seen the photo,” Lotti told the Intercept. He noted that the children’s reactions to the picture depended more on their parents’ reaction than the picture itself.

Brazil’s population is majoritarily Catholic and homosexuality is depicted as evil in the country’s public opinion. Evangelical TV programmes especially are known for their anti-gay sentiment.

 

Jair Bolsonaro, Brazilian presidential candidate for the Social Liberal Party is well-known for his anti-LGBT views (EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images)

Presidential far-right candidate Jair Bolsonaro is currently leading the polls ahead of the October election, Bloomberg reported. He has repeatedly attacked the Brazilian LGBT+ community throughout his political career, once suggesting that gay children can be “beaten straight,” according to the Guardian.

A report published in January by the LGBT+ watchdog group Grupo Gay de Bahia found that 445 LGBT+ people died in Brazil in 2017 alone. 387 were murdered and 58 killed themselves.

These alarming numbers show an increase of 30 percent in anti-LGBT+ attacks in the country from 2016.

More: Americas, Anti-LGBT brazil, Brazil, Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, LGBT Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, Sugarloaf Mountain

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