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What Happened Between Jair Bolsonaro and Leonardo DiCaprio?

The President of Brazil and the Famous Actor have had a Fight on Social Networks about the Protection of the Amazon in the next elections.

Jair Bolsonaro and Leonardo DiCaprio

Photos: Gustavo Lima, U.S. Department of State

LatinAmerican Post | María Fernanda Ramírez Ramos

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Leer en español: ¿Qué ha pasado entre Jair Bolsonaro y Leonardo DiCaprio?

Actor Leonardo DiCaprio has been getting involved in environmental advocacy for a few years now. In these efforts, the protagonist of Titanic has made millionaire donations for the preservation and protection of the Amazon. Amid his activism, he called on young Brazilians to register to vote in the upcoming elections. "Brazil is home to the Amazon and other critical ecosystems for climate change. What happens there matters to all of us and the vote of young people is key to promoting change for a healthy planet," said the artist on his Twitter account.

Although it was not written, it is clear that his comment implicitly called for the urgent need for a transformation of the country's government. And the facts speak for themselves. Under the presidency of Jair Bolsonaro, the Amazon, and other Brazilian ecosystems, have suffered great deterioration. In fact, in recent years there has been deforestation of the Amazon forest in a way that has not been recorded for more than 15 years. In other words, the environmental protection plans have regressed and the president of this country does not seem to care.

On the contrary, every day there is greater deforestation. In this regard, this week MapBiomas, an alliance of various institutions that protect the environment, released a report which indicates that the Brazilian federal government has only responded to 2.17% of deforestation alerts since the Bolsonaro government.

We recommend you read: Brazil: from the lung of the world to global environmental concern

Bolsonaro's Response to DiCaprio

Before Leonardo DiCaprio's call to young Brazilians, Bolsonaro responded with sarcasm. The ultraconservative president, who is seeking to be re-elected for another presidential term, responded to the Hollywood star that he thanked him and that indeed young people should go out and vote. "Our people will decide if they want to maintain our sovereignty over the Amazon or be governed by thieves who serve foreign interests," he added.

As a result of this discussion, Bolsonaro and Annita also argued on Twitter. The Brazilian singer supported Leonardo DiCaprio and encouraged the promotion of the young vote in Brazil for the next elections. To this comment, the president replied ironically, trying to infantilize Annita. "I'm happy that you were talking to a Hollywood actor, @Anitta, it's the dream of every teenager," he said. In addition, he added: “I am glad that you agree with me in including young people in decisions about the direction of the country. You will certainly also agree that those who choose the path of evil, murder and rape, are also mature enough to answer for their actions. Great powers, great responsibilities".

Other Artists With the Amazon

The fight between Leonardo DiCaprio and Jair Bolsonaro is not the first and it is very likely that it will not be the last between a president and celebrities over a Rainforest. In fact, more and more artists are joining activism campaigns to pressure governments and draw attention to the Amazon and its importance to humanity. In this regard, on April 28, an event organized by the Alliance for the Amazon called "Amazon Night" was held in Bogotá.

Its purpose was to raise public awareness about the urgency of protecting the Amazon, which is shared by Colombia, Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Guyana, French Guiana and Suriname. Likewise, the event was intended to urge the candidates for the presidency of Colombia, who will go to elections on May 29, to generate real policies for the protection of the Amazon in case they reach the House of Nariño (Presidential Palace).

Various artists performed at the event, including the participation of the singer Duina del Mar, members of Systema Solar and Bomba Estéreo, and the Jaguara artist collective. However, the night also featured the presence of the indigenous peoples who inhabit the area and who lead various initiatives to protect the Amazon ecosystem.