What Brazil’s protests mean

Jeffrey Lesser – CNN, 8/17/2015

What does it mean when hundreds of thousands of Brazilians take to the streets shouting “out with the President”? After countrywide protests this weekend, the answer is still not clear.

Sunday’s protests in São Paulo were peaceful and mostly in the spirit of modern democracies. Many different groups helped organize the march, representing diverse political positions united by anti-President Dilma Rousseff, anti-Workers’ Party rhetoric.

Numerous groups had rented their own loudspeaker-equipped trucks and positioned them at different locations along the Avenida Paulista, where protests traditionally take place in São Paulo. The movements that represented fringe positions had few interested listeners. For example, only a couple of hundred people (in the midst of an estimated crowd of 135,000) were paying attention to an organization demanding a military coup and claiming that only the army could stop the “homosexualization” of Brazil.

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