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In a poll carried out by the research institute datafolha, roughly 11 million people in brazil, around seven percent of the country’s population believe the earth is flat. according to datafolha, most of the “flat-earthers” are men, often catholics or evangelical christians with relatively low levels of education.
they hold the belief that the earth is a flat stationary body. all the existing evidence proving the earth to be spherical are dismissed as conspiracies. the discoveries of issac newton and nicolaus copernicus are shunned as hoaxes.
there are well-learned individuals who are vocal in promoting the flat-earth theory. afonso de vasconcelos, a geophysicist with a phd from the university of sao paulo operates a youtube channel called "true science" (ciencia de verdade) where he propagates his flat-earth notions to over three hundred thousand subscribers.
since far-right president jair bolsonaro came to power early january 2019, climate change skeptics and flat-earthers have gained a voice. one of bolsonaro's most prominent inner circle members and former astrologer olavo de carvalho, has said he "cannot refute" flat-earth theory.
last november, siddhartha chaibub, a flat-earther youtuber with over 30 thousand subscribers organized the first-ever conference for brazilian flat-earthers, which attracted hundreds of people in sao paulo.
critics have attributed the flat-earth theory’s prominence to poor public education and increased social media use. fernando lang da silveira, a professor of physics at the federal university of rio grande do sul stated, “the internet gives a voice to these idiots.” however, anderson neves, a flat-earth theorist believes otherwise saying, "flat-earthers are the smartest.” he believes that a round or spherical earth is "humankind's greatest lie, dictated by the global elite." in justifying the earth’s flatness, neves gives a simplistic explanation stating, "just look at the horizon. climb a mountain and take pictures. you can see the earth isn't curved."#s63