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View Poll Results: Americans: How do you feel when foreigners want to discuss politics with you?
It's nice that they are interested, and I welcome the opportunity to talk about my country. 29 42.65%
I find it ill-mannered and annoying. 5 7.35%
I find it amusing, and rather enjoy baiting them. 9 13.24%
I tolerate it with good humour, although I'd rather talk about other things. 25 36.76%
Voters: 68. You may not vote on this poll

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  #161  
Old 12.06.2011, 15:07
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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That's it, Sky. A friend of mine was in a serious summer opera school in Rome, mostly with other Americans. They were told off numerous times for being too loud on public transport and other places. These weren't teenagers, but people in their late 20s or early 30s.

I always thought I just heard Americans more because they are my heritage and my ear must be tuned to them, but non-Americans have mentioned it too.
I know I can sometimes be loud but usually I'm not the loudest of my friends.

I've met a few here that can get loud enough to stand out in a crowd, they're quite loveable so I forgive them.
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  #162  
Old 12.06.2011, 15:12
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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I know I can sometimes be loud but usually I'm not the loudest of my friends.

I've met a few here that can get loud enough to stand out in a crowd, they're quite loveable so I forgive them.
I've found that when I'm around other Americans, I get louder than normal, too.
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  #163  
Old 12.06.2011, 15:39
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Maybe 'cause everything seems bigger on the other side of the pond.... more space, larger roads, houses, places, cars, taller bigger people.
(6 foot 4 for a man and 5 foot 9 for a woman is a quite normal size, for instance)
Maybe we've physically adapted to the environment and the wide spaces at disposition over there, and so everything seems real big and loud... even when we're not trying to be.... over here.

Perhaps Jonathan Swift had a valid point..
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  #164  
Old 12.06.2011, 15:41
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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Maybe 'cause everything seems bigger on the other side of the pond.... more space, larger roads, houses, places, cars, taller bigger people.
(6 foot 4 for a man and 5 foot 9 for a woman is a quite normal size, for instance)
Maybe we've physically adapted to the environment and the wide spaces at disposition over there, and so everything seems real big and loud... even when we're not trying to be.... over here.
So what's the Italians' excuse, then?
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  #165  
Old 12.06.2011, 16:11
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

So, about those US American politics: seems strange to me that there's a political party called "Republicans" -- I mean, they've got their republic, so surely they've achieved their aim? I would've thought they'd have had little to agitate about for the last 235 years.

But the Democrats, on the other hand, now there's a party that still has a raison d'être ... still much to achieve in the USA.

Last edited by Guest; 12.06.2011 at 20:05. Reason: Typo
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  #166  
Old 12.06.2011, 16:27
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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So, about those US American politics: seems strange to me that there's a political party called "Republicans" -- I mean, they've got their republic, so surely they've achieved their aim? I would've thought they'd have had little to agitate about for the last 235 years.

But the Democrats, on the other hand, now there's a party that still has a raison d'être ... still much to acieve in the USA.
The Republican party was formed by abolitionists.
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  #167  
Old 12.06.2011, 19:17
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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So what's the Italians' excuse, then?
the excuse why italians are smaller? simple. As kids they are told that they'll have to work when they'll be bigger.
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  #168  
Old 13.06.2011, 10:27
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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That's because they are going at it wrong.

Educate more of the already Spanish speaking folks to teach and have classes taught in both English and Spanish starting from kindergarten to ALL of the students. Help the entire community become bilingual and everyone wins. It may involve some more cost to begin with but in the end, the profit on every level will show it to be a worthwhile investment.

Even the bare smattering of Spanish I picked up along the way + the French I failed in high school help me communicate with people here in Switzerland, there is no loss suffered by making sure that all of the children can speak more than one language. Making it part of every day life will make it easier to learn and remember as they go, not to mention removing the divisions within the communities (or at least making the divide something other than language).

There really is no reason why that can't happen in those states I mentioned earlier, although some of the other states may benefit from something other than Spanish being the second language taught from the start.
Really the reason is funding and scarcity of resources. There are currently not enough bilingual teachers( Spanish ) to fill the current
demand for teachers. Dallas currently recruits teachers out of Spain
and other South American countries to fill current needs.

I am all for learning languages, and you certainly have a good idea.
The economic reality is that there are not enough funds to fulfill
this in the short run.
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  #169  
Old 13.06.2011, 10:49
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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Spain
and other South American countries
Gosh! American education really is in a bad state, isn't it?
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  #170  
Old 13.06.2011, 11:00
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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Gosh! American education really is in a bad state, isn't it?
ironically the thread you launched achieved the opposite: most of US citizens are annoyed by foreigners asking about US policy and this thread ignited a heated debate about it.
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  #171  
Old 13.06.2011, 11:19
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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Really the reason is funding and scarcity of resources. There are currently not enough bilingual teachers( Spanish ) to fill the current
demand for teachers. Dallas currently recruits teachers out of Spain
and other South American countries to fill current needs.

I am all for learning languages, and you certainly have a good idea.
The economic reality is that there are not enough funds to fulfill
this in the short run.
hahaha. working in bilingual for years i can tell you there certainly are enough, and more. and, if they wanted to really save money, they would tap into all those people who come from central and south america with advanced degrees (many do!) and teaching degrees and work them into the system. if dallas recruits teachers from spain and s. america then they must be some of the most impractical administrators ever, especially when there are huge amounts of bilingual professionals, or perhaps they are too busy with their biases to see it...
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  #172  
Old 13.06.2011, 14:39
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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hahaha. working in bilingual for years i can tell you there certainly are enough, and more. and, if they wanted to really save money, they would tap into all those people who come from central and south america with advanced degrees (many do!) and teaching degrees and work them into the system. if dallas recruits teachers from spain and s. america then they must be some of the most impractical administrators ever, especially when there are huge amounts of bilingual professionals, or perhaps they are too busy with their biases to see it...
They probably are inefficient administrators. The fact remains, that not only Dallas, but all over Texas they cannot find enough teachers bilingual
teachers to fill positions.
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  #173  
Old 13.06.2011, 14:45
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

why wouldn't they go to look in california or new york? and texas is filled with bilingual speakers who go for teaching certifications, maybe people are scared of the climate there towards latinos? don't laugh, i was offered a position where i was warned that regardless of the need (and laws) for bilingual and esl education, i would have a difficult time in that area as a educated, professional latina woman. i didn't take the position because nobody wants to put up with racist, intolerant people. maybe it's a similar problem?

anyway, they can also do as other states have done when they have a great need, offer to subsidize education for those who fit the bill. please, people subsidize those who study certain areas of science or math or whatnot because they are needed. why not teachers? i've seen states like virginia and other southern states (where bilingual span/eng speakers aren't as prevalent) advertise in ny and ca for bilingual teachers. texas really has no excuse with the amount of bilingual speakers right there.
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  #174  
Old 13.06.2011, 14:59
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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why wouldn't they go to look in california or new york? and texas is filled with bilingual speakers who go for teaching certifications, maybe people are scared of the climate there towards latinos? don't laugh, i was offered a position where i was warned that regardless of the need (and laws) for bilingual and esl education, i would have a difficult time in that area as a educated, professional latina woman. i didn't take the position because nobody wants to put up with racist, intolerant people. maybe it's a similar problem?

anyway, they can also do as other states have done when they have a great need, offer to subsidize education for those who fit the bill. please, people subsidize those who study certain areas of science or math or whatnot because they are needed. why not teachers? i've seen states like virginia and other southern states (where bilingual span/eng speakers aren't as prevalent) advertise in ny and ca for bilingual teachers. texas really has no excuse with the amount of bilingual speakers right there.
California and NY are very expensive. That is why many are leaving
CA and NY.

Texas is filled with bi-lingual people that do not have the credentials
to be a teacher. Additionally, they have to pass a proficiency test
in Spanish to warrant extra pay. Many of the Spanish speakers have
learned Mexican Spanish and cannot pass a "proper" Spanish test, no
joke.

Additionally, most of the inner-city schools are predominantly Hispanic so
there is not so much racism there. There tend to be a high rivalry between the blacks and Hispanic teens though.
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  #175  
Old 13.06.2011, 15:12
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

hahah. those are all very biased views of texan hispanics (and hispanics in general) and i can assure you that they are untrue. i have family (bilingual) in texas who speak perfect english and perfect spanish and are running up to new york where the schools pay well, the quality of education is excellent, the benefits are great and they help bilingual students acquire their masters because they know in the long run they will be saving themselves a lot of money. and to say their mexican spanish can't pass a proficiency test is just as ignorant as saying some guy who learned english in texas couldn't pass an english proficiency exam.

as long as people have these kind of views of things you won't ever be able to tap in to the resources you have right in your own yard. and in case you didn't know, i can tell you that they are GREAT resources.
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  #176  
Old 13.06.2011, 15:25
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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hahah. those are all very biased views of texan hispanics (and hispanics in general) and i can assure you that they are untrue. i have family (bilingual) in texas who speak perfect english and perfect spanish and are running up to new york where the schools pay well, the quality of education is excellent, the benefits are great and they help bilingual students acquire their masters because they know in the long run they will be saving themselves a lot of money. and to say their mexican spanish can't pass a proficiency test is just as ignorant as saying some guy who learned english in texas couldn't pass an english proficiency exam.

as long as people have these kind of views of things you won't ever be able to tap in to the resources you have right in your own yard. and in case you didn't know, i can tell you that they are GREAT resources.
Pretty ignorant judgement from someone that does not and has not
lived there. There are a huge number of open positions for bilingual
teachers -- fact. How do I know? Because my sister and brother-in-law
work in Dallas ISD as bilingual teachers and superintendents. B-I-L is responsible for teacher recruiting.

In NY, you will earn more, but you pay much more for apartment/house which negates any financial gains in the first place.
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  #177  
Old 14.06.2011, 10:31
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

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There is no reason to deny the heritage of whichever language speakers. They should learn to speak English as well. This often not
the case.
Indeed, look at Italy.

Italy has regions where the primary language is not Italian (i.e. German, Ladino, Friulian, etc.), but EVERYONE can speak Italian (this was pointed out by an Italian co-worker while complaining that few people speak Italian in Zurich), so you can always get by with Italian (though when I'm in those regions I ask people which they prefer to speak).

Tom
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  #178  
Old 14.06.2011, 12:10
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Going way off topic. Feel free to start a new thread on language teachers, but this one's reserved for discussion about people wanting to talk politics with Americans.
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  #179  
Old 14.06.2011, 12:25
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

Lately, a lot of US politics seem to be overshadowed by political sex scandals. Most Europeans really don't care about them though so these topics usually get ignored.
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  #180  
Old 14.06.2011, 18:01
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Re: Americans: Foreigners who want to talk politics - boring, annoying or harmless?

So, as ya'll have seen (and some maybe looked away from ), part of why I don't tend to discuss politics much is because sometimes, people's attitudes make me flat out angry.

One example of such an individual is this woman who is apparently hoping to run for President.




The discussion between Amaraya and HollidayG is the type of thing that would be discussed among my friends. Some of them very steadfastly in the view that people in the US should speak English - regardless of the fact that part of the populace of some states has "always" spoken dialects of French, some also German, and some Spanish as well. I do not mean folks who came as immigrants in the early 1900s either (although I think there is a point there too) but rather colonial times settlers who came from areas where those languages are spoken and whose families have "always" lived there.

This dispute about language really gets my goat as I have lived in enough different areas of the US, where there are enough people who speak enough languages that I feel pretty strongly that at least a second if not third language should be taught in schools from the start. If they were taught so, there would not be the problems with standardized tests that there are, with wording more comfortable to folks who speak "perfect" English in every aspect of their life. Not everyone in the US speaks or reads as if they're headed to an Ivy League school - nor should they.

Another aspect of language is what comes across to me in the video I linked. The division that starts from not understanding what another person is saying goes also into their culture and as has been pointed out previously, the vast diversity of the US means that not every American shares the same culture, not exactly. So... learn the most common languages used (French, German, Spanish) "automatically" in school, the circle of friendships widen, the circle of cultural acceptance also widens...

From all that, hopefully we don't wind up with idiots like "that woman" (Michele Bachmann) in the video running for public office with their ignorant backwards views about people.
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