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Brazil's new president Jair Bolsonaro, a proud and vocal homophobe, has canceled a planned visit to the United States following a loud outcry.
Bolsonaro was scheduled to receive the "Person of the Year" award from the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce in New York on May 14, but the event was hampered by protests and boycotts. Because of Bolsonaro's antigay rhetoric and actions, GLAAD and New York state Senator Brad Hoylman applied pressure on the American Museum of Natural History, the original host of the gala, and the event's sponsors.
The museum dropped the event and sponsors like Delta Airlines pulled out. The event was then moved to another venue, the New York Marriott Marquis, but then today GLAAD announced Bolsonaro was scrapping the American trip altogether.
"President Jair Bolsonaro's cancelled trip to the United States is a victory for LGBTQ Brazilians," Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD, said in a statement. "Despite our own President's anti-LGBTQ record and actions, this news proves advocacy organizations, businesses, and local officials can still affect real change. As LGBTQ Americans and allies prepare to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, this successful campaign is an important reminder that in order to gain acceptance, LGBTQ people across the globe must continue to be visible, stand together, and do everything possible to protect the hard-fought progress we've earned."
Bolsonaro has long promoted violence against gay people, including LGBTQ children.
"I prefer, rather, a son run over by a convoy to a homosexual son. If my son were 'gay,' he would be dead to me," Bolsonaro has said.
He's also called his political opponents antigay slurs and warned gay tourists not to come to Brazil. One of his first orders as president was to remove LGBTQ concerns from the list of issues handled by the nation's human rights ministry, the Associated Press reports. He did not assign it to any other agency.