Fascist government destroys lungs of earth



Map showing the Amazon fires.

The Amazon rainforest fire, and Brazil’s President’s reactions are a bigger problem than most Americans realize.

Last Oct. I was in New Orleans with my friends from Brazil when President Jair Bolsonaro was elected. When we heard the news, it was heartbreaking. I held my friend Joao Ribeiro in my arms as he wept.

He told me he was terrified to go back to his country. Months later, we are seeing the effects of a totalitarian fascist regime. The Amazon rainforest has been on fire and is irreparably damaged.

According to Newsweek, the Amazon rainforest is the world’s largest tropical rainforest and supplies the planet with more than 20 percent of the world’s oxygen. If much of this burns, there will be serious repercussions to the health of the planet and our oxygen supply.

How did this fire happen? From investigations into the fire, it was more than likely started by cattle ranchers and loggers who want to use the land and resources.

These are the same people that President Bolsonaro promised to let explore the Amazon’s untapped economic potential when he was campaigning for president. 

But why does all this matter to us in Monroe, Louisiana? There are many reasons why this should matter to us. With the serious risk that we face due to climate change already causing problems across the world, losing the Amazon rainforest would be a nail in the coffin for irreversible effects.

According to Reader’s Digest, the loss of any more of the rainforest would lead to increases in global warming and the death of biodiversity in many parts of South America. The Amazon is already suffering with large portions of trees being cut down.

If it continues, there would be a major change in the ecosystem that would lead to a drier climate in the region. We would see the loss of many different species of plants and animals.

From what my friend Rogerio Aguiar tells me, this is a heartbreaking tragedy. I was supposed to go to Brazil this Dec. to see them, but now I do not know if I can.

Rogerio told me, “I want you here brother, but it is so hard seeing my country, which was once so beautiful, being destroyed in front of my eyes. Every day I pray for change, but I don’t know if it will happen.”

Brazil may be across the equator and seem so far away, but if things are not changed, we will be the generation that watches a fascist government destroy the lungs of the earth.