Brazilian President: Reporters are 'wimps', have higher chance of dying from COVID-19

Jair Bolsonaro verbally attacks journalists, says they have a heightened chance of dying of COVID-19 because they are not athletic.

Ben Ariel ,

Jair Bolsonaro
Jair Bolsonaro
Reuters

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Monday verbally attacked journalists during a public event, describing reporters as “wimps” and saying they have a heightened chance of dying of COVID-19 because they are not athletic.

During the event, titled “Defeating COVID-19,” Bolsonaro described his own experience battling the coronavirus in July, crediting his use of hydroxychloroquine and his self-described history as an athlete for his mild symptoms. He has previously said he believed his athletic past made him immune to the worst of the coronavirus.

“That history of an athlete, the press feasted on it, but when (COVID-19) gets one of you wimps, your chance of surviving is quite a bit lower,” Bolsonaro told reporters on Monday, using the Portuguese colloquial word ‘bundao’, according to the Reuters news agency.

“You only know how to do evil, to use a pen largely for evil. Your chance of surviving is quite a bit lower,” he added.

Monday’s comments come a day after Bolsonaro told a reporter, “I want to punch you in the face,” after the reporter asked about thousands of dollars that were transferred into a bank account of the president’s wife by a former aide who is now the target of a corruption probe.

Bolsonaro has had a fractious relationship with the media, frequently singling out specific newspapers and journalists for his ire.

The Brazilian Press Association recently announced it would file a lawsuit in Brazil's Supreme Court against Bolsonaro over possibly exposing members of the media to COVID-19.

The association, known as ABI, alleged Bolsonaro did not respect the health safety distance from reporters and took off his mask at a televised press conference in which he announced that he had tested positive for COVID-19.



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