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True Covid Death Count

According to the World Health Organization over three million people died from COVID-19 in 2020, and this number now exceeds 3.4 million. Since the beginning of the pandemic more than 710,000 of these deaths are Brazilian.

Having reached an estimated 20% + of all the world COVID-19 deaths it makes anyone with a little bit of savvy want to search for a culprit if there is one. So, the question is, are we to believe Brazilian’s president at the time, Jair Bolsonaro is completely innocent of any wrongdoing, or should he be held accountable for the way he dealt with the pandemic and ratio of worldwide deaths? 

It is believed that there is an undercount of total deaths directly and indirectly attributed to COVID-19. These deaths are a key indicator to track the evolution of the pandemic. However, many countries still lack functioning civil registration and vital statistics systems with the capacity to provide accurate, complete and timely data on births, deaths and causes of death.

Thinking about the damage done in Brazil a logical assessment would be to analyze the events that have occurred since the beginning of the virus in March 2020, when the Brazilian Health Minister, Luiz Henrique Mandetta was quickly fired less than a month into the first lockdown because Mr. Bolsonaro said, “I know … life is priceless. But the economy and jobs must return to normal.”

In other words, Bolsonaro singlehandedly knew what was best for the country. Not very democratic considering, but fortunately he wasn’t allowed to make all the decisions about tackling the pandemic which fell in the hands of governors from each state (county) throughout Brazil.

Incidentally, the Federal Supreme Court, known as the STF in Brazil is the highest body of the Judiciary, and is primarily responsible for guarding the Constitution, as defined in art. 102 of the Constitution of the Republic. It is composed of eleven Ministers, all born Brazilians and elected by presidents from the past and present.

Actually, many people are thankful that the STF exists because if they had not intervened with who should have the control over the pandemic then the death count could have easily been even higher. Bolsonaro, who in my opinion acted similarly to a fascistic ruler would not have taken any precautions like lockdown which could have had disastrous consequences.

As my wise parents used to say, ‘You have to be tough to be kind!’ is exactly the measure of cautiousness needed when COVID-19 was in its infancy. There wasn’t enough known about it to simply say carry on, as Bolsonaro wanted.

Mandetta was following international protocol and got axed because Bolsonaro was frustrated from poor economical results, as a consequence of lockdown. He even said, “It’s just a little cold, and that there is nothing to worry about.” Fortunately, the majority took heed to reducing risk and kept at bay from possible contamination, but then others followed Bolsonaro's leadership by letting down their guard and spreading the disease to others.

Bolsonaro didn’t like the idea of wearing masks. He went out and met followers with blatant disregard for their usage. In December 2020, he jumped out of a boat in low tide in Guaruja, São Paulo, without a mask and went around hugging his supporters in the sea. I’m no expert on the matter, but it really seemed like a stupid thing to do in the middle of the pandemic.

Apart from encouraging others to rise to copycat status, it showed a lack of real empathy to the nation. What really got me going was how his fans acted as if there was nothing wrong with his stance. Like children imitate their elders, ill-informed citizens might think everything was alright, and therefore let down their guard to contagiousness while infecting others in a more vulnerable physical condition.

If that wasn’t true then why do the statistics show so many deaths because of COVID-19 in Brazil. I even dare anyone to contest such facts based on logical deduction from witnessing his attitude, abruptness, rudeness, and total lack of empathy for the population in general.

By watching him prance around like everything was under control, illustrated his need for attention. However, it wasn’t a time for cockiness, as after so many deaths it was a moment of reflection and compassion.

Incidentally, all this scenario occurred before a vaccine against Covid-19 was introduced in January 2021.

Take care!

Prof. Carl Boniface

Bored Bolsonaro          

Vocabulary builder:

Wrongdoing (n) = crime, offence, misconduct, transgression, bad behavior

Singlehandedly (adv) = alone, independently, unaided, solitarily, on your own accord, (ant) jointly

Tackling (v) = undertaking, beginning, attempting, attacking, deal with, confronting

Fascistic (adj) = totalitarian, dictatorial, undemocratic, tyrannical, one-party

Heed (n) = attention, notice, regard, mindfulness, care, attentiveness, (ant) disregard

Kept at bay (idiom) = If you keep something or someone at bay, or hold them at bay, you prevent them from reaching, attacking, or affecting you.

Blatant (adj) = obvious, unconcealed, barefaced, unashamed, deliberate 

Stance (n) = posture, deportment, attitude, position, standpoint, view

Contagiousness (adj) = Capable of being transmitted by direct or indirect contact, as an infectious disease. Bearing contagion, as a person or animal with an infectious disease that is contagious.

Dare (v and n) = as a verb to have the courage to do something. "A story he dare not write down." (syn) be brave enough, have the courage, take the risk. Or defy or challenge (someone) to do something. "She was daring him to disagree." As a noun, a challenge, especially to prove courage. "Athletes who eat ground glass on a dare."

Prance (v) cavort, dance, frolic, revel, gambol, horse around, dance around, party

Cockiness (n) = arrogance, bumptiousness, self-importance, conceitedness, pompousness, pushiness, brashness, presumptuousness, (ant) modesty

Scenario (n) = situation, state, set-up, setup, setting, development, consequence, picture, state of affairs, circumstances

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