Nuevo Culture

Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Under Investigation for Harassing a Whale – Yes, a Whale

Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has a lot of problems. He was forced to turn over his passport after he was named a suspect in an investigation into whether his government plotted a military takeover of the country. His plans to run for office again in Brazil are over for the foreseeable future. And now, he’s under investigation for harassing a whale.

The incident took place in June of 2023. In a video that circulated on social media last year, a man is seen riding a personal watercraft at a distance of about 15 meters from a humpback whale, while seemingly recording on his phone. Federal prosecutors have claimed the man is Bolsonaro.

Brazilian legislation dictates that all motored vessels are required to keep a distance of at least 100 meters from whales and other cetaceans. Intentional attempts to get closers carry a sentence of up to two to five years in prison, as well as a fine. 

Of course, for supporters of Bolsonaro, this is just more proof of political persecution. For detractors, it’s just another piece of the puzzle of the kind of man Bolsonaro has always been – someone who has no respect for women, the LGBTQ+ community, the environment, or rules that don’t benefit him. 

And for the internet, it’s an opportunity to make memes and laugh.

Some just want to see the images.

Some made the images and wondered if the whale was going to testify.

Others were checking to see if it was April Fools Day.

While others were just adding it to the list of Bolsonaro crimes.

And others just cannot wait to see what the world will say about the news.

Either way, it’s impossible to deny that “under investigation for harassing a whale” makes for a very unique headline.