Hugo Chavez’s Foreign Minister Calls Opposition Party “Little Faggots”

Our Spanish is pretty rudimentary (if you needed a blue pencil, we’d totally have you covered) but a Queerty reader sent us this clip of Nicolás Maduro, Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez’s foreign minister. Filmed by a Caracas news channel, it shows Maduro apparently condemning Chavez’s opposition party in the upcoming election as “sifrinitos” and “mariconsotes”—”preppies” and “little faggots”—who have tried to hurt the Venezuelan people but weren’t able to, and never will, because of the spirit of liberty of the people.

His comments are met with laughter and applause from other ministers and audience members.

The event was a celebration of the “Hechos de Abril 2002,” when Chavez was returned to power after a 47-hour coup saw him briefly ousted and detained by the military.

But, hey, what’s 47 hours when you’ve been leader for 14 years, right?

Thanks to nc caracas and Feinstein for translation

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #hugochavez #nicolásmaduro #southamerica stories and more


  • Feinstein

    He basically saying that this class (derogatory) of rich and pretentious faggots have tried to hurt the Venezuelan people, but weren’t able to do it and never will because of the spirit of liberty of the people.

  • jason

    What an idiot this Maduro is. His moustache looks like piece of shit. His hair is ugly. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s into men. Homophobes usually are.

  • fagburn

    Thankfully there are no homophobic politicians in the States…

  • Spike

    Uh oh, Atlantis is going to have to stop going to Venezuela or Houston Bill is going to start up his Atlantis boycott again!

  • Auntie Mame

    Is the opposition, in fact, munchkin sized homosexuals?

  • Okama

    What makes this so sad is that it’s quite a u-turn for Hugo Chávez and Venezuela. Though many will just assume that Venezuela, as an “evil-communist-state” is also homophobic, they’re actually better on gay rights than a lot of the other countries in the region, not to mention the world. They repealed their sodomy laws before the US and have nation-wide workplace anti-discrimination laws and hate-crimes legislation. Chávez himself has expressed regret that full-scale anti-discrimination statutes were removed from the constitution because of opposition from the Catholic Church, and has twice tried to get them added again, though this failed on both occasions. They’re currently considering adding marriage-equality and adoption rights, and they’ve already repealed their equivalent of DADT. That’s not perfect for sure, but it’s pretty good. It sure beats several US states currently.

  • Richard Ford

    “Mariconzotes” are “big faggots,” not “little faggots.” Does that make it any better?

  • Houston Bill

    @Okama: Actually, Venezuela ranks near the bottom of Spanish speaking Latin American nations as far as LGBT rights go. Venezuela opposes human rights mechanisms at the UN and for all the talk of liberalizing legislation, nothing has come of it.

  • Andy

    Aaah, it’s Saddam Hussein!

  • Frank

    @Okama: I can tell you have no clue of what you are talking about, you are an ignorant when it comes down to Venezuelan policies towards the GLBT community

  • Houston Bill

    I lived in Venezuela. Granted it was a long time ago (I was there when Chavez tried his coup attempt in the 90’s), but I’ve returned periodically for business. Here’s my take.

    Chavez’s Venezuela is not particularly gay friendly. Its not Dominica, Grenada, or Russia, but its not particularly welcoming. Part of that is just that Venezuela tends to be more conservative socially. And part of it is because many of the better educated Venezuelans have fled. And then there is the fact that the country is overrun by violent crime on a scale rarely seen outside of war zones.

    Chavez’s government, periodically, makes statements about a commitment to LGBT rights. Usually these statements are issued outside of Venezuela and do not appear to be directed for domestic consumption. Look at it another way. Chavez currently controls the judiciary, the executive, and the legislative branch of the government. He could pass a LGBT non-discrimination bill or civil unions bill with the flick of a finger. But yet nothing has happened. Meanwhile, Colombia, Argentina, Uruguay, Mexico, and Brazil have passed and enacted profoundly strong LGBT legislation. Costa Rica and Chile are about to do the same. Compared to other Spanish speaking Latin American countries, Venezuela is a definate laggard by any metric of LGBT equality.

    Meanwhile Chavez’s government has been palling around with the only people that will still deal with him internationally at the UN. They are Belarus, Russia, Syria, Iran, etc. As a result, Venezuela’s foreign policy is really bad.

    I understand why Chavez came to power. I actually would have voted for MAS in 1990’s Venezuela (a left party) and do not consider myself a conservative in a Latin American political context. But he hasn’t been the solution for anyone except his family and supporters. And his government has been ineffective for pretty much everyone else, including most poor Venezuelans and the LGBT community.

  • Houston Bill

    @Spike: I have no problem with Atlantis going to Venezuela. It has an official (actually more than a few) who acts like an ass. Its not illegal to be gay there. Its not illegal there to advocate for LGBT rights. Islas Roques or Isla Margarita would be a, not perfect, but acceptable substitution for Atlantis stops such as Dominica and Grenada (where being Gay is ILLEGAL and these laws are periodically enforced against locals). And it is far better than Russia, where wearing a “Legalize Gay” shirt or simply carrying a rainbow flag creates a cause for arrest and places one in great danger of being assaulted. I would advise anyone (Gay or straight) to take appropriate security measures before going to Caracas as a result of staggering crime rates. Its a real shame, because Caracas, was once a really fun place.

    But, just like your comments on the deplorable situation in The Gambia, these comments are off topic (as Atlantis doesn’t go to Venezuela). Atlantis should be condemned for patronizing Russia, Grenada, and Dominica. Venezuela should be held to account for the comments of its’ government officials regarding Gay people (as well as its staggering anti-Semitism), its hideous foreign policy, and its’ inaction relative to its’ cultural peers on LGBT rights. But those topics are mutually exclusive. We can multi-task. But at the end of the day, the situation in Venezuela, from a purely LGBT perspective, is nowhere near as bad as in Russia, Dominica, or Grenada.

    There is a hierarchy of my evaluation of countries’ LGBT rights. It is based upon the de facto situation on the ground for tourists AND LOCALS. Is it legal to be gay there? Is it legal for LGBT persons to enjoy freedom of petition, protest, assembly, expression, privacy, speech, press, etc? Is there a culture of violence that focuses on the LGBT population? In Venezuela, the answers to the first two questions is Yes. On the third, I’d say not particularly, but there is still an awful lot of general crime there. Compare that to Russia (4 people arrested this week for a holding up a sign that says “Gay is Normal”)or Grenada (a 41 year old man was arrested last year for having non-commercial consensual sex with a non-related adult over the age of consent in the privacy of his home).

    Look, if you wish to laugh at people who feel that Atlantis is acting against the interests of the LGBT community by shovelling fistfuls of Gay dollars to Russia and some profoundly anti-Gay Carribean islands, fine. But perhaps, you might wish to do some research on the situation in those nations before you just simply show your ignorance on these issues by commenting on nations that have nothing to do Atlantis. I’ll continue to criticise Atlantis when warrented. But Venezuela isn’t an Atlantis issue.

  • BossmanX

    Has someone told Sean Penn ?

  • fagburn

    Be interesting to see how many other articles Queerty has published about flippant silly maybe homophobic remarks made by politicians from other Latin American countries.
    Not that I’m suggesting there’s a right-wing hegemony behind all this.

  • M

    @Houston Bill:

    this was spot on…. i live in venezuela.

  • M


    The need to look at everything from a left-right paradigm is why the world sucks so much right now. Chavez is not good just because he is “left” and the “right” is not inherently bad. People need to be judged for what they do and what they say. One of the most confusing things about Chavez is that he gets a lot of support from the left in the u.s. and Europe, and yet most know little more about him other than that he is “left” and “helps the poor”. Judge Chavez and his government by their actions. The country has one of the highest murder rates in the world. There is still a huge gap between the rich and poor, and Chavistas are now making billins of dollars. The only people Chavez has helped are his corrupt cronies….

  • Houston Bill

    @fagburn: While I haven’t seen Queerty posting on any right wing politicians anti-Gay statements, I would challenge you to find any that rise to the level of what was said in Venezuela in a Spanish Speaking Latin American country. The only comments that were worse were uttered by (and subsequently apologized for) Evo Morales (who is to the left of Chavez).

    In Mexico, to be sure, the right leaning PAN party is more anti-Gay than the PRI or the PRD, so one might be able to find some comments there. But in Colombia, the government of Uribe (probably the most conservative government in recent memory in Latin America) was very much in favor of LGBT equality (and ahead of the Colombian populace).

    You would have a case with regards to Nicaragua, where the Chamorroists can be considered to be anti-Gay. But Daniel Ortega, while better, is hardly a star in that regard.

    In Peru, the former interior minister (under a center right government) made some idiotic comments arguing that Gay people cannot be police officers. Nothing came of that.

    The real issue in many of these nations isn’t a question of law, but of class. Is the state strong enough to really enforce any pro-LGBT legislation? Does that legislation impact poor LGBT persons? That’s the real issue.

    But I don’t think that LGBT issues in Spanish Speaking Latin America are a left-right issue as much as they are in the West.

  • vic

    I live in venezuela, and can say chavez’s goverment does not respect any rights when it comes to minimize and offend the opponent whoever it is. They had never run against lgbt rights but never respect them either. The fact that the situation is in some way better than in other countries doesnt mean it is ok. Criminals do whatever the want here and there’s like 20-30 murders only on the weekend and only in the capital by average, 90% of them remain unpunished and unresolved so we’ll never know how many of them are for hate and we’d never know the real lgbt situation in here.

  • nnn

    It’s actually translated more as “big ol’ faggots.” “little faggots” would’ve been “mariconsitos.

  • fagburn

    @Houston Bill: No. The only comments commented on by the gay press were about Chavez – which turned out out to be be a lie – and Evo, which was also made up.
    Not that I’m suggesting Queertry is just an expression of right wing hegemony.
    No sirree!

  • Vadren

    Chavez has done a lot for GLBT rights in his country, as well as the rights of women, children, and the poor in his country. What BS that queerty claims they have ‘no agenda’ when they post pro-Obama articles all the time and jump on any opportunity to slander the enemies of the Washington consensus. Chavez has won free and fair elections because his agenda is popular, despite what a few rich english-speaking right wingers might say online (and yeah, I guess some of them might even be gay.)

Comments are closed.