Brazil’s frontrunner for president would rather his son die than be gay

Jair Bolsonaro, presidential candidate for the Social Liberal Party, attends an interview for Correio Brazilianse newspaper in Brasilia on June 6, 2018. - Brazil holds general elections in October. (Photo by EVARISTO SA / AFP) LGBT+ rights (Photo credit should read EVARISTO SA/AFP/Getty Images)

The favourite to become Brazil’s next president is a far-right demagogue who has said he would prefer to have a dead son over a gay one.

Jair Bolsonaro of the Social Liberal Party leads the polls after former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva—commonly known as Lula—was banned from running because he is serving a 12-year jail term for corruption.

Bolsonaro, who was stabbed on Friday during a rally, has made numerous anti-gay comments, including in 2015 when he said hospital patients should be allowed to reject ‘gay blood.’

Brazilian presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro (PSL), speaks during the first presidential debate ahead of the October 7 general election, at Bandeirantes television network in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on August 9, 2018. (Photo by Nelson ALMEIDA / AFP) (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)

Bolsonaro leads in the polls after his main challenger was taken out of the race (NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty)

Speaking to TIME last month, he stood by his previous statement that if he saw two men kissing in the street, he would punch them.

Brazilian congressman and presidential canditate for the next election, Jair Bolsonaro (R), cheer the crowd during a military event in Sao Paulo, Brazil on May 3, 2018. (Photo by Nelson ALMEIDA / AFP) (Photo credit should read NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty Images)

He said he would punch men if he saw them kissing each other in public (NELSON ALMEIDA/AFP/Getty)

“I do not kiss my wife on the street. Why face society? Why take that into the school? Little children of 6 or 7, watching two men kiss as the government wanted them to do. Is this democracy?” asked Bolsonaro.

He then equated homosexuality to paedophilia, making a link which is historically popular among homophobes and has experienced a resurgence over the past year, thanks to alt-right trolls.

The politician, who served as an army captain under Brazil’s brutal 21-year-long dictatorship, said: “So let’s respect the paedophile’s right to have sex with a two-year-old? Would that unite [Brazil]?”

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