Natural History Museum of New York Refuses to Host Event in Honor of Bolsonaro

Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce wanted to honor Bolsonaro at the famed museum

São Paulo

The National History Museum of New York announced on its social media profile that it will not host a ceremony honoring president Jair Bolsonaro as “Person of the Year.”

“With mutual respect for the work and objectives of our individual organization, we have decided that the museum is not an ideal location for the gala dinner of the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce. This traditional event will be moved to another location on the original date and time.” 

A model of a 1-year-old Tyrannosaurus rex, part of the ?T. rex: The Ultimate Predator? exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, March 1, 2019. Most T. rexes never made it past age 1, but those who did put on up to 140 pounds every month, maturing into an 18,000-pound predator. (George Etheredge/The New York Times)
T. rex: The Ultimate Predator exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History in New York, March 1, 2019. (George Etheredge/The New York Times) ORG XMIT: XNYT128 - NYT

In a series of social media posts written in Portuguese on Sunday (14), the museum clarified that it “did not invite President Bolsonaro; he was invited as part of an external event.” The institution also thanked “the people who expressed their opinion" about the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce event.

Continuing, the museum said it was “deeply” worried “about the declared objectives of the current Brazilian administration,” and that it is “actively working to understand our options in relation to the event.”

The awards ceremony will take place on May 14. The Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce chooses two personalities every year, an American and a Brazilian, and they are honored in an event with 1000 people, who each pay up to $30,000 to attend. The name of the American who will be honored has not been released yet. 

Folha asked the museum what were its issues were in relation to Bolsonaro. 

In a note, the museum's spokesperson said that the event honoring the Brazilian president does not reflect, “in any manner” the positions of the museum in relation to the protection of the Amazon Forest. 

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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