The technique of reverse labeling
by Olavo de Carvalho
Miguel Nicolelis is a neuroscience teacher at Duke University (USA), founder of the Edmond & Lilly Safra Neuroscientific Institute (Macaíba, RN) and member of the Brazilian and French Academies of Sciences. Added to that notable curriculum was his recent appointment by Pope Benedict XVI to the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Sciences. The Viomundo website, directed by journalist Luiz Carlos Azenha, now introduces him in a still more attractive light, claiming the scientist is a defenseless victim of a vast hate and fear mongering campaign waged by the eternally abominable “extreme right.”
Shocked and intimidated by the murderous virulence of the campaign, Prof. Nicolelis, in a tone of spurious sincerity distinguishing him as an unconditional follower of the free and democratic debate, warns against the dangers of ideological radicalization:
“Your political, ideological opponent starts to be seen as your enemy. And that enemy is subject to any kind of punishment, even death. I cannot imagine that those people spreading hate, revenge and violent messages can at the same time be Christians.”
But, after all, what did the murderous campaign consist of? It consisted of two things: Firstly, a ten-line story, published at the Rorate Coeli website on January 5 (see: http://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2011/01/pope-names-pro-abortion-and-pro-gay.html), stating that Prof. Nicolelis is a fervent defender of abortion and the gay agenda (and also, as of last year, of the candidacy of radical socialist Dilma Rousseff). His presence in an institution linked to the Catholic Church is therefore a little strange. Then, an article written by American journalist Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, published on the website Last Days Watchman (see: http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/defender-of-for-abortion-and-homosexualist-police-appointed-to-vaticans-to) and later reproduced with or without additions and comments on a few Christian websites, among them the Brazilian version of Lifesitenews, Notícias Pró-Família, administered by Brazilian writer Julio Severo (I will speak about him later on). Hoffman, who is a Catholic, commented, “Pope Benedict XVI is a staunch defender of the right to life and of family values, and it is unlikely that he was aware of Nicolelis’ record when he made the appointment.”
Was there some threat, any hint of injurious plans? Prof. Nicolelis admits, “No, there was none.”
In view of these perfectly inoffensive expressions of disagreement, how did Prof. Nicolelis react? By debating with his opponents? No way. He himself describes his argumentative procedures:
“My laboratory staff contacted Duke University, warned about those websites and the university police have already begun to monitor the case. The security of my laboratory was reinforced… Nobody enters there without going through security procedures.”
And he cautions: at the first threatening sign in Brazil, he will call the Federal Police immediately.
Among the potential aggressors of Prof. Nicolelis denounced by the Viomundo website, one has already been put under control. Julio Severo, wanted by Brazilian authorities for the heinous crime of having stated and insisted that homosexuality is a sin and curable, is hidden abroad, moving from one country to another, living in extreme poverty with a wife and four small children. Journalist Luiz Carlos Azenha mentions that fact with evident contentment. The Fórum website, by columnist Luis Nassif (http://blogln.ning.com/forum/topics/homofobia-em-preto-e-branco), also celebrates it as a sign that Brazilian democracy is progressing.
The logical premises forming the basis of Prof. Nicolelis’ statements and the reports of the Viomundo and Forum websites could not be more evident:
1) Uttering a single word against homosexuality, even in a generic way and with no threat, is incitement to violence, something unworthy of people professing to be Christians.
2) An informed citizen and lover of the free and democratic debate should react to those opinions by presenting himself publicly as a victim under imminent attack, calling police and having his unfortunate critics persecuted like criminals and hunted down like animals.
The brutally exaggerated reaction is expected to prompt the distinguished public to believe piously that the violent individuals are those who expressed opinions, not those who mobilized against them the armed forces of the repressive State system.
If the reader wanted a local illustration of what I have written previously on the technique of reverse labeling, this is it.
The constant and obsessive use of that technique is one of the most trivial manifestations of the general inversion of reality, characteristic of the revolutionary mentality.
Not by coincidence, but very significantly, Prof. Nicolelis had been railing some time ago against the “hysterical right.” Hysteria, by definition, is a hyperbolic reaction to some imaginary and false provocation. Therefore, when Prof. Nicolelis reacts hysterically, it is the others who are hysterical.
Translated by Julio Severo. Reviewed by Don Hank.
Portuguese version of this article: The technique of reverse labeling
Spanish version of this article: La técnica de la rotulación inversa
Source: Diário do Comércio
Divulgation: Julio Severo in English