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NCOBPS Denounces William Waack of Brazil’s TV Globo
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11/23/2017 to 1/31/2018
When: Thursday, November 23, 2017

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National Conference of Black Political Scientists Expresses Solidarity with Brazilians of African Ancestry
and Denounces William Waack of Brazil’s TV Globo


FOR IMMEDIATERELEASE                                                          November 21, 2017



Shayla Nunnally, President

Sekou Franklin, President-Elect


Since 1969, the National Conference of Black Political Scientists (NCOBPS) has been devoted to advocating for people of African descent.   Over 15 years ago, NCOBPS created “The Race and Democracy in the Americas Project,” in order to develop partnerships between black political scientists and Afro-Brazilian scholars. This cross-national linkage underscores our commitment to solidarity with the African Diaspora.

NCOBPS is troubled by the recently disclosed comment by William Waack, an anchorman of TV Globo, Brazil’s largest television network.  During a trip to Washington, D.C., on assignment covering the U.S. presidential election in November 2016, Waack made racially-incendiary remarks captured on a video that was just discovered earlier this month.  Referring to a loud honk from a car, he was heard saying: “It’s black. It’s a black thing (Portuguese translation: É preto.  É coisa de preto).”  In translation, this is a pejorative reference to a black person—the equivalent of calling someone the “n-word” in the United States.

Waack’s racist commentary is regularly used in Brazil to demean people of African ancestry.  It denotes that something is “going wrong” or is “bad” and inherently deems Afro-Brazilians as “problematic.” The video further reveals the everyday racism against Afro-Brazilians and reinforces structural racism permeating Brazilian society.

NCOBPS condemns Waack’s racist discourse and all manifestations of hatred, marginalization, dehumanization, and white supremacy in Brazilian society. We reject Waack’s attempts to import Brazil’s racism into the United States, which has its own racial toxicity.  Negative conceptions of “blackness," as those often connected to the “n-word,” also detract from black people's assertions of their humanity.  In an era of seeming repeated challenges to the humanity, dignity, and rights of various historically-disparaged groups, NCOBPS promotes equality and justice for all.  

As black political scientists, we stand in solidarity with Afro-Brazilians and join with them in the long struggle against racism and white supremacy.



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