miércoles, 3 de octubre de 2012

Talking point: You and politics

Discussing the topic of politics is always a hot issue, as some people always make it personal and express their ideas in a vehement way.

Anyway, let's give politics a try in this week's talking point. Get together with the members of your conversation group and discuss the questions below, which you can (or should) prepare before holding your discussion.

Who’s the President of the Government?
How long does he hold a term of office?
When is the next election in Spain (or in your country)? And the next general election?
Do you think it is important to vote in elections?
How many people usually vote in Spanish elections?
Should voting be compulsory?
There are around 400,000 politicians in Spain. Why are there so many people interested in becoming a politician?
Do you know any scandals involving politicians?
Things in Spain will get better if …

Which celebrities in Spain are or have been involved in politics or in protests?
And in other countries?
Do you think that celebrities should be involved in politics?
Do celebreties have social responsibilities because of their fame?

Do you agree with the statements below?
I wouldn't vote for a celebrity politician unless I really liked their films.
I'll probably always vote for the same party unless they change in a big way.
If I had the chance, I'd love to be a politician.
I'd prefer it if there were more women in politics.
At least 50% of those holding public office should be women.

Do US politics have a direct influence in Spain (or in your country)?

To illustrate the topic, we are posting two videos today. Towards the end of the summer both the Republican and Democrat parties held conventions to choose their candidates for the November elections and to get their messages across the country. Some celebrities took part actively in the conventions in support of the candidates. Watch Clint Eastwood's and Scarlett Johanson's at the Republic and Democrat conventions.

First, here's Clint Eastwood's speech at the Republican National Convention. You can watch the full eleven-minute version here.

And here's Scarlett Johanson's speeach at the Democratic National Convention.

You can read the transcripts for the two full speeches here.

You can do a video listening activity about Scarlett Johanson and her campaign for Dolce and Gabbana here.

You can watch Clint Eastwood and his famous It's half time America ad here.