2. THE LETTER


EXCERPTS OF THE LETTER OF MR. JOSÉ FUZEIRA ADDRESSED TO THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC, 

GETÚLIO VARGAS, 

PUBLISHED IN THE NEWSPAPER 

DIÁRIO DA NOITE on MAY 7, 1940. 

 

Mr. President of the Republic, Doctor Getúlio Vargas 

 

Your Excellency, my awe in respect. May Your Excellency allow the signatory, although he does not have the credentials of any educational or scientific authority, to ask you for a few minutes of attention to the major problem, 

commented as follows. (...) 

 

We therefore respectfully request Your Excellency's clear-sighted attention to a calamity that is about to descend on the female youth of Brazil. I am referring, Mr. President, to the enthusiastic movement that is exciting hundreds of young women, attracting them to become football players, without taking into account that women cannot practice this violent sport without seriously affecting the psychological balance of their organic functions, due to the nature that has disposed them to "be a mother". (...) 

 

According to the newspapers, no less than ten female cadres have already been formed in Rio. 

Others are also being set up in São Paulo and Belo Horizonte. And with this growth, in a year's time it's likely that some 200 women's football clubs will be organized throughout Brazil, 

in other words, 200 nuclei that will destroy the health of 2,200 mothers-to-be…(...) 

 

As far as we know, such sporting nonsense has not yet appeared in any other country. So, in order to prevent its first fruits from degenerating into a calamity for the health and sporting composure of the fairer sex, I've come to appeal for a nod of acknowledgement and 

Your Excellency (...) would like to request the advice of a group of doctors, so that they can decide whether a woman can, without manifest and serious damage, be an active element in a sport of friction and rude and aggressive physics.…(...) 

 

May you, Mr. President, help and save these mothers-to-be from the risk of destroying their precious health, and the health of their future children... 

and from Brazil. 

 

Mr. José Fuzeira, 

May 7, 1940 – Diário da Noite 

 

EXCERPTS OF THE LETTER 

ANSWER TO MR. JOSÉ FUZEIRA OF ADYRAGRAM, PRESIDENT AND DEFENDER OF SPORT CLUB BRASILEIRO TO JORNAL DOS SPORTS IN 

MAY 10, 1940 

 

I carefully read Mr. José Fuzeira's letter to an evening newspaper in our city. At first, I took the case seriously. Reflecting, I asked myself: who is this Mister José Fuzeira? I immediately realized that this gentleman is unknown in the sport and therefore lacks the authority to discuss the matter. He tried to make a name for himself in sports circles with just a letter to the highest magistrate in the country. 

 

There are men whose jobs give them time to deal with women's issues.(...) Mister José Fuzeira should watch women's football to see how healthy this sport is and the benefits it brings to its players. 

 

It's true that football, like other sports, can't be practiced by everyone, especially by those who have an aversion to physical education and who only do gymnastics on the radio, afraid of performing in public...(...) 

 

Mister Fuzeira one day he'll think that swimming is harmful to the female sex, because the water can give competitors the flu and short, clingy clothes are at odds with his way of thinking about mothers-to-be.(...) 

 

Mister Fuzeira is invited to attend the first meeting of women's football and publicly point out the disadvantages of practicing it in the way it has been used among young Brazilians. 

 

Before that, Mister Fuzeira should worry about the kids who play sock ball in the street outside his house, breaking the windows of the neighborhood. In that case, the writer would be doing a great service and wouldn't have time to worry about things that only interest the fair sex. 

 

Margarida ‘Adyragram’ Pereira, 

May 10, 1940 – Jornal dos Sports