#126: Facebook and American Politics

Ready to dive into one of the most frequent questions lately? Can you guess what it is?

“What the hell is happening in the United States??”

As Americans living in Brazil, we have been getting asked A LOT about the recent elections in the United States. Although we are not going to be talking too much about our political preferences, in this RLR episode we will discuss why the elections may have resulted how they did.

More importantly, we will use this as an example of why Global Communication and being a diplomatic communicator is SO crucial nowadays! And we have a special guest, Teacher Vanessa from the United States, to help us.

Ready to improve your English (with over 50 new words and phrases! See below) and learn about some really cool topics? Let’s jump into today’s episode!

More About Teacher Vanessa | Watch the video recording on YouTube!

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Words You Should Know:

  • So far so good – progress has been satisfactory up to now
  • Kick ass – to do a great job (slang)
  • Elderly – of an old person
  • Skydiving – the sport of jumping out of a plane with a parachute
  • Mindset shift – to change the way one thinks at a fundamental level
  • Roadblocks -things that get in the way of progress
  • Controversy – public disagreement, heated discussion
  • Break out – to gain freedom or move beyond a barrier
  • (One’s) Bubble – opinions and ways of thinking
  • Put (oneself) in someone’s shoes – to try to empathize with someone and understand their actions or opinions
  • Common Ground – opinions or interests shared by two or more people or parties
  • Tension – a strained or difficult relationship
  • Negate – to deny
  • Empathetic Phrases:
    • “I can see where you’re coming from… but…”
    • “That’s interesting, but…”
    • Summarize their point of view, then state yours
    • “Correct me if I’m wrong…”
  • Babysit – the job of watching someone’s children
  • Align with – to come to agreement; to give support
  • Bias – inclination or prejudice for or against someone or something
  • Confirmation bias – the natural human tendency to interpret new information as confirming our existing beliefs or theories (e.g. reading something because it supports our bias, and ignoring information that does not)
  • blindersBlinders – anything that prevents one from seeing the whole picture
  • Out of hand – out of control
  • Devil’s advocate – to support a view opposing one’s own for the sake of argument
  • At odds – against one another
  • Sane – mentally healthy
  • Tasteful – appropriate
  • Curl up in a ball – to put oneself in the fetal position
  • Elephant in the room – an important topic that is on everyone’s mind, but that no one wants to discuss
  • What the heck? WTF? – exclamations used when one is in shock or disbelief
  • Protest – an organized public demonstration against something
  • The lesser of two evils – when given two bad options, it is the one that is less bad
  • Icky – gross, disgusting
  • Rally – a meeting of many people showing support for a cause or protesting something
  • Screwed – hopeless
  • Ballot – the piece of paper one votes on
  • Rig – to do something fraudulently in order to gain an advantage
  • Opposing force – something going against something or someone
  • Outsider – someone who does not belong to a group
  • Fit the bill – suitable for a specific purpose
  • Riled up – excited or angry
  • White bread/white rice – someone who is plain, not exciting
  • Lobbyist – a person or organization who buys political influence with money
  • Contact Hypothesis – framework showing that prejudice is reduced through extended contact with people that have different backgrounds, opinions and cultures than ourselves
  • Prejudice – preconceived opinions that are not based on any real fact or experience
  • On the line – at risk
  • click-baitBait – something used to attract prey (for example, a worm when fishing)
  • Click bait – an interesting or surprising headline used to get people to click and read or watch something
  • Ruin – to destroy or make something useless
  • Sources – places or people from where information originates
  • Shed light on (something) – to provide clarity about a confusing subject
  • Harsh – cruel, severe
  • Poke – to press with a finger or sharp object
  • Tactic – a strategy
  • Bold – willing to take risk

Links and Mentions:

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