World Cup Protests Turned Violent in the Streets of Sao Paolo Before Thursday’s Opener (Videos)

brazil world cup protests - police brutality pepper spray innocent man

You might think that the majority of Brazilians are thrilled their country is hosting the 2014 FIFA World Cup, seeing as how soccer is basically their religion. However, it’s just not that simple.

A very sizable portion of Brazilians are pretty pissed off that their government decided to spend a couple billion dollars on the soccer tournament instead of, say, healthcare, education, and public transit. These people have been protesting the World Cup for years, and now that the event is here they’ve kicked their protests into high gear.

Unfortunately, yesterday some protests turned violent. In the streets of Sao Pauolo, just miles from Corinthians Stadium, site of the World Cup opener between Brazil and Croatia, protesters were throwing rocks and setting things on fire. And in return, riot cops were firing all sorts of “non-lethal” projectiles.

Here’s a scene captured by the CBC:

And here’s another scene in which the police quite clearly cross the line, firing pepper spray into a man’s face from point-blank range after he’s already been apprehended by several officers:

People at the scene said this guy was an innocent, peaceful protester. However, it doesn’t really matter. Even if he just threw a rock at a puppy, the cops shouldn’t have pepper sprayed him while holding him down. That’s just ridiculous.

Then again, riots always do tend to bring out the worst in everybody.


Tags: 2014 FIFA World Cup, brazil, police brutality, protest, Riots, world cup,