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名校励志英语演讲 第119期:21世纪的挑战(13)

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These are the ideals that were at the core of our founding over 220 years ago. These are the ideas that led us across our continent and onto the world stage. These are the ideals that Americans cherish today.

这些就是220年前美国立国的核心理想。这些理想指引我们跨越美洲大陆,走向世界舞台。这些仍然是美国人民今天珍视的理想。

As I said in my press conference with President Jiang, we have an ongoing quest ourselves to live up to those ideals. The people who framed our Constitution understood that we would never achieve perfection. They said that the mission of America would always be "to form a more perfect union"—in other words, that we would never be perfect, but we had to keep trying to do better.

正如我在和江主席举行的记者招待会上所说,我们美国人民正在不断寻求实现这些理想。美国宪法的制定者了解,我们不可能做到尽善尽美。他们说,美国的使命始终是要“建设一个更为完美的联邦。”换言之,我们永远不可能尽善尽美,但我们必须不断改进。

The darkest moments in our history have come when we abandoned the effort to do better,when we denied freedom to our people because of their race or their religion, because there were new immigrants or because they held unpopular opinions. The best moments in our history have come when we protected the freedom of people who held unpopular opinion, or extended rights enjoyed by the many to the few who had previously been denied them,making, therefore, the promises of our Declaration of Independence and Constitution more than faded words on old parchment.

每当我们放弃不断改进的努力,每当我们由于种族或宗教原因、由于是新移 民,或者由于有人持不受欢迎的意见,而剥夺我们人民的自由,我们的历史就出现最黑暗的时刻。每当我们保护持不受欢迎的意见者的自由,或者将大多数人享受的权利给予以前被剥夺权利的人们,从而实践《独立宣言》和《宪法》的诺言,而不是使其成为一纸空文,我们的历史就出现最光明的时刻。

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