Enoch Powelll Mirrorpix

Trump antes de Trump

BERKELEY — Compreender o sucesso político de Donald Trump, o Presidente eleito dos EUA, não é fácil. Houve muitas comparações loquazes com políticos populistas do passado, desde Huey Long até George Wallace. Mas a comparação mais reveladora pode ser com uma figura histórica de outro país: o instigador nativista britânico Enoch Powell no final da década de 1960 e início da década de 1970.

À primeira vista, a comparação pode parecer bizarra. Powell vinha de uma família da classe média baixa. Era um académico clássico de verdadeira erudição e um homem de princípios. Era, além disso, um membro político, tendo sido deputado ao Parlamento desde 1950 e tendo assumido o cargo de Ministro-adjunto para a habitação no governo do Primeiro-Ministro Anthony Eden em 1955.

Ainda assim, os paralelismos com Trump são inegáveis. No célebre discurso "Rios de Sangue" que proferiu em 1968, Powell, um hábil orador, abandonou com determinação a corrente política dominante. Condenou a imigração e denunciou a Lei das Relações Raciais de 1968, que proibia a discriminação em matéria de habitação, emprego e empréstimos. A passagem que deu nome ao seu discurso controverso aludia a motins nas cidades do interior dos Estados Unidos e invocava Virgílio: «Tal como os romanos, parece-me ver "o rio Tibre com muito sangue".»

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