Leandro Narloch has to do mea culpa for poisoning the public debate in Brazil – 08/21/2021 – Reinaldo José Lopes

Yes, dear reader, I was ashamed too when I heard of the return of our colleague Leandro Narloch to the list of columnists of this Folha. I think it is undeniable that his books and texts helped poison the Brazilian public debate. Narlochism is only a branch line of pocket Slavism.

The point is that the Curitiba writer’s work has method. Whether it’s about the indigenous people of Brazil, Zumbi dos Palmares, the glory of economic liberalism or the climate crisis, Narloch’s specialties are:

1) Take a comma and make it a full page. To him, the context of the facts doesn’t matter, just slightly dissonant (and generally not very relevant) details that allow him to say, “A-ha, they hid that from you, reader”;

2) Use and abuse of so-called anecdotal evidence: what So-and-so or Sicrano saw once or twice carries the same weight for him as years of carefully controlled observations and statistical analyzes;

3) Inability to interpret complex subjects that he does not seem to have mastered.

His debut column here brings good examples of Marakutien 1 and 3. By limiting the problem of the climate crisis to the number of people directly killed by natural disasters in the last century, Narloch strains the mosquito and swallows the camel like the good man would do say Nazarenes.

That’s because the increase in Earth’s temperature is the kind of change that has nonlinear and chaotic effects, like the moth flapping its wings here in São Carlos and causing a typhoon in the Philippines. Our Paraná columnist does not take into account the additional deaths from malaria, the lives claimed in water-scarce civil wars, and what to do when coffee can no longer be grown in São Paulo or Ethiopia. And you see, I’m leaving aside the possibility of really catastrophic changes, like large-scale changes in ocean currents.

When talking about Indians, Narloch also likes to use point 2 and repeat stories about evil foresters selling monkeys to tourists on the roadside. This would be an indication of how the supposedly good relationship between indigenous people and natural ecosystems is to be put into perspective.

However, even if every BR in this country were full of Guarani selling lion tamarins, it would not negate the fact, as evidenced by countless satellite data and field research, that indigenous reserves are the main bulwark against deforestation, both here and in other countries. Interestingly, he’s mentioning something here that he doesn’t usually mention with the same enthusiasm.

But the ultimate work of Narlochism was an attempt to argue, based on DNA, that the aboriginal peoples were smoothly integrated into colonial society by 1500. After all, the Brazilian genome carries a significant proportion of the Indian genome.

Narloch just forgot to note that there was a brutal sexual bias in these dates. Only 0.5% of Brazilians carry Y chromosomes (the genetic mark of masculinity) that come from indigenous men. It is a clear sign of violent conquest: women are raped or become concubines, men are executed or enslaved without leaving any offspring.

Narloch took advantage of the mea culpa season and could do his own. Every cascade that came from his pen became an intellectual justification for the fact that the disciples who are now in charge of the country do what they do.

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