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奥巴马在巴纳德学院毕业典礼上的讲话

  Remarks by President Obama at Barnard College Commencement Ceremony

  Barnard College

  Columbia University

  New York, New York

  May 14, 2012

  美国总统奥巴马在巴纳德学院毕业典礼上的讲话

  纽约州 纽约市

  哥伦比亚大学巴纳德学院

  2012年5月14日

  Thank you so much. (Applause.) Thank you. Please, please have a seat. Thank you. (Applause.)

  非常感谢大家。(掌声)谢谢大家,请入座。谢谢大家。(掌声)

  Thank you, President Spar, trustees, President Bollinger. Hello, Class of 2012! (Applause.) Congratulations on reaching this day. Thank you for the honor of being able to be a part of it.

  谢谢你们,斯巴院长[译者注:中文名石德葆]、各位校董、伯林格校长。2012届毕业生,你们好!(掌声)祝贺你们迎来了这一天。感谢你们让我有幸来参加这个活动。

  There are so many people who are proud of you -- your parents, family, faculty, friends -- all who share in this achievement. So please give them a big round of applause. (Applause.) To all the moms who are here today, you could not ask for a better Mother’s Day gift than to see all of these folks graduate. (Applause.)

  有很多人为你们感到骄傲——你们的父母、家人、师长和朋友——都为取得这一成就出了力。因此,请为他们热烈鼓掌。(掌声)今天在座的各位母亲们,再也没有比看到所有这些孩子们毕业更好的母亲节礼物了。(掌声)

  I have to say, though, whenever I come to these things, I start thinking about Malia and Sasha graduating, and I start tearing up and -- (laughter) -- it's terrible. I don't know how you guys are holding it together. (Laughter.)

  但是我得说,每当我来到这种场合,就会想到玛莉娅和萨夏将来毕业的情景,我就会热泪盈眶——(笑声)——真不好意思。我不知道你们大家是怎么把持得住的。(笑声)

  I will begin by telling a hard truth: I’m a Columbia college graduate. (Laughter and applause.) I know there can be a little bit of a sibling rivalry here. (Laughter.) But I’m honored nevertheless to be your commencement speaker today -- although I’ve got to say, you set a pretty high bar given the past three years. (Applause.) Hillary Clinton -- (applause) -- Meryl Streep -- (applause) -- Sheryl Sandberg -- these are not easy acts to follow. (Applause.)

  我一开始就要说明一个确凿的事实:我是一名哥伦比亚大学的毕业生。(笑声和掌声)我知道可能会有一点同门弟子相争的劲儿。(笑声)但我还是为能够在你们今天的毕业典礼上讲话而感到荣幸——不过我得说,你们在过去三年树立了相当高的标准。(掌声)希拉里·克林顿——(掌声)——梅丽尔·斯特里普——(掌声)——谢里尔·桑德伯格——在她们之后出场可不容易。(掌声)

  But I will point out Hillary is doing an extraordinary job as one of the finest Secretaries of State America has ever had. (Applause.) We gave Meryl the Presidential Medal of Arts and Humanities. (Applause.) Sheryl is not just a good friend; she’s also one of our economic advisers. So it’s like the old saying goes -- keep your friends close, and your Barnard commencement speakers even closer. (Applause.) There's wisdom in that. (Laughter.)

  但我要指出,希拉里的工作极为出色,她是美国有史以来最杰出的国务卿之一。(掌声)我们已授予梅丽尔艺术与人文总统奖章。(掌声)谢里尔不仅是一位好朋友;她还是我们的经济顾问之一。正如那句老话所说——亲近你的朋友,但更要亲近在你们巴纳德学院毕业典礼上讲话的人。(掌声)这话寓意深长。(笑声)

  Now, the year I graduated -- this area looks familiar -- (laughter) -- the year I graduated was 1983, the first year women were admitted to Columbia. (Applause.) Sally Ride was the first American woman in space. Music was all about Michael and the Moonwalk. (Laughter.)

  话说我毕业那年——这个地方看着眼熟——(笑声)——我毕业于1983年,哥伦比亚大学开始录取女生的第一年。(掌声)当时萨莉·莱德成为第一位进入太空的美国女性。那时的音乐全是麦克尔和太空步。(笑声)

  [AUDIENCE MEMBER: Do it! (Laughter.)]

  【画外音:一名听众说“走一个!”(笑声)】

  No Moonwalking. (Laughter.) No Moonwalking today. (Laughter.)

  不走太空步。(笑声)今天不走太空步。(笑声)

  We had the Walkman, not iPods. Some of the streets around here were not quite so inviting. (Laughter.) Times Square was not a family destination. (Laughter.) So I know this is all ancient history. Nothing worse than commencement speakers droning on about bygone days. (Laughter.) But for all the differences, the Class of 1983 actually had a lot in common with all of you. For we, too, were heading out into a world at a moment when our country was still recovering from a particularly severe economic recession. It was a time of change. It was a time of uncertainty. It was a time of passionate political debates.

  我们当时有“随身听”,没有IPod。这四周的一些街区没有现在这样诱人。(笑声)时报广场不是适合全家人去的地方。(笑声)我知道这一切都属于古老的过去了。毕业典礼演讲人絮叨旧事是再糟糕不过的。但是,尽管有种种差别,1983年毕业班其实与你们各位有许多共同之处。这是因为,当时我们踏入社会的时候,也正值国家从一场特别严重的经济衰退中恢复。那是一个变革的时期,一个充满未知的时期,一个政治辨伦激情高涨的时期。

  You can relate to this because just as you were starting out finding your way around this campus, an economic crisis struck that would claim more than 5 million jobs before the end of your freshman year. Since then, some of you have probably seen parents put off retirement, friends struggle to find work. And you may be looking toward the future with that same sense of concern that my generation did when we were sitting where you are now.

  你们能够体会到这一点,因为在你们刚开始熟悉这所校园的时候,经济危机降临,不等你们第一学年结束,它已经导致500多万人失业。从那个时候以来,你们大概看到一些父母推迟了退休计划,一些朋友在苦苦求职。面对未来,你们也许像当年我这一代坐在你们的座位上的时候一样,感到忧心忡忡。

  Of course, as young women, you’re also going to grapple with some unique challenges, like whether you’ll be able to earn equal pay for equal work; whether you’ll be able to balance the demands of your job and your family; whether you’ll be able to fully control decisions about your own health.

  当然,作为年轻女性,你们还要应对某些特殊的挑战,比如是否能够享有同工同酬;是否能够平衡工作和家庭的需要;是否能够对自身健康有全部决定权。

  And while opportunities for women have grown exponentially over the last 30 years, as young people, in many ways you have it even tougher than we did. This recession has been more brutal, the job losses steeper. Politics seems nastier. Congress more gridlocked than ever. Some folks in the financial world have not exactly been model corporate citizens. (Laughter.)

  虽然过去30年来女性的机会有了突飞猛进的增加,但作为年轻人,你们在很多方面面临着比我们当时更严峻的挑战。这场衰退更加严重,失业人数更多。政治争议似乎更加难以调和。国会比以往任何时候更加僵持。金融界的一些人很难被称为模范企业公民。(笑声)

  No wonder that faith in our institutions has never been lower, particularly when good news doesn’t get the same kind of ratings as bad news anymore. Every day you receive a steady stream of sensationalism and scandal and stories with a message that suggest change isn’t possible; that you can’t make a difference; that you won’t be able to close that gap between life as it is and life as you want it to be.

  所以,毫不奇怪,对我们体制的信心达到空前之低,特别是好消息不如坏消息引人注意的时候。人们每天接到一连串耸人听闻的消息或者丑闻,其中传递的信息是:变革是不可能的;你们的努力无济于事;你们无法消除现实生活与你们的理想生活之间的差距。

  My job today is to tell you don’t believe it. Because as tough as things have been, I am convinced you are tougher. I’ve seen your passion and I’ve seen your service. I’ve seen you engage and I’ve seen you turn out in record numbers. I’ve heard your voices amplified by creativity and a digital fluency that those of us in older generations can barely comprehend. I’ve seen a generation eager, impatient even, to step into the rushing waters of history and change its course.

  我今天的任务就是要告诉你们,不要相信这些说法。因为尽管困难很大,但我坚信你们的能力更大。我看到过你们的激情,我看到过你们的奉献。我看到过你们的投入,我看到过你们挺身而出,人数空前。我听到了你们的声音,创意和对数码技术的精通使得这种声音格外响亮,而我们这些年长的人几乎不得其解。我看到心情迫切、跃跃欲试的一代人准备跻身历史激流中,扭转其方向。

  And that defiant, can-do spirit is what runs through the veins of American history. It’s the lifeblood of all our progress. And it is that spirit which we need your generation to embrace and rekindle right now.

  这种蔑视困难、积极进取的精神贯穿于整个美国历史的进程。这种精神是我们一切进步的源泉。此时此刻,我们需要你们这一代继承和发扬光大的正是这种精神。

  See, the question is not whether things will get better -- they always do. The question is not whether we’ve got the solutions to our challenges -- we’ve had them within our grasp for quite some time. We know, for example, that this country would be better off if more Americans were able to get the kind of education that you’ve received here at Barnard -- (applause) -- if more people could get the specific skills and training that employers are looking for today.

  可以看出,问题并不在于事情是否会好转——情况总是会变好的。问题也不在于我们是否已经有了应对我们面临的挑战的解决办法——我们一直掌握着这些解决办法,已有相当一段时间了。比如说,我们知道,如果有更多的美国人能得到你们在巴纳德得到的这样的教育(掌声)——如果有更多的人能够获得今天的雇主所需要的那些特定的技能和训练,美国的情况会更好。

  We know that we’d all be better off if we invest in science and technology that sparks new businesses and medical breakthroughs; if we developed more clean energy so we could use less foreign oil and reduce the carbon pollution that’s threatening our planet. (Applause.)

  我们知道,如果我们投资于能够造就新的企业并带动医学突破的科学与技术,如果我们开发出更多的清洁能源以减少使用外国石油并减少对我们的地球构成威胁的碳污染,我们大家的日子会过得更好。(掌声)

  We know that we’re better off when there are rules that stop big banks from making bad bets with other people’s money and -- (applause) -- when insurance companies aren’t allowed to drop your coverage when you need it most or charge women differently from men. (Applause.) Indeed, we know we are better off when women are treated fairly and equally in every aspect of American life -- whether it’s the salary you earn or the health decisions you make. (Applause.)

  我们知道,如果有一定的规则制止大银行拿别人的钱去恶赌(掌声)——如果不允许保险公司在你最需要的时候取消你的保险资格或者对男女收费标准不一,我们的日子会过得更好。(掌声)确实,我们都知道,如果妇女在国家生活的方方面面都能得到公平与平等的对待——无论是你的薪金所得还是你所作的健康决定,我们的日子会过得更好。(掌声)

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