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        #79: Millard Fillmore Signs Compromise of 1850

        作者:Frank Beardsley 發布日期:5-1-2013

        ANNOUNCER:

        Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION – American history in VOA Special English.

        In eighteen fifty, the United States Congress debated a proposal for an important compromise. The compromise dealt mostly with the national dispute over slavery. That dispute threatened to split the northern and southern parts of the country. There was a danger of civil war. Many leaders supported the compromise. But President Zachary Taylor did not.

        1850年,美國國會圍繞一項事關重大的妥協方案展開激烈辯論。辯論的核心議題是奴隸制度的存廢。在蓄奴問題上,美國南方和北方意見分歧,使國家面臨內戰危險。很多領導人支持妥協,但是泰勒總統不以為然。

        This week in our series, Leo Scully and Larry West complete our story of the Compromise of Eighteen Fifty.

        VOICE ONE:

        Zachary Taylor
        Zachary Taylor

        Taylor did not think there was a crisis. He did not believe the dispute over slavery was as serious as others did. He had his own plan to settle one part of the dispute. He would make the new territory of California a free state. Slavery there would be banned.

        泰勒覺得,危機之談是某些人危言聳聽,事態并沒有如此嚴重。他自己早有打算,準備讓加利福尼亞成為一個自由州,禁止蓄奴。

        Taylor's plan did not, however, settle other parts of the dispute. It said nothing about laws on escaped slaves. It said nothing about slavery in the nation's capital, the District of Columbia. It said nothing about the border dispute between Texas and New Mexico. The congressional compromise was an attempt to settle all these problems.

        但是泰勒的計劃過于片面,沒有涉及歸還逃亡奴隸的法律,沒有涉及首都華盛頓特區的奴隸買賣,也沒有涉及德克薩斯跟新墨西哥的邊界之爭。國會提出的妥協議案是要徹底解決所有的問題。

        VOICE TWO:

        Senator Henry Clay of Kentucky, who had written the compromise, questioned the president's limited proposal. Clay said: "Now what is the plan of the president? Here are five problems, five wounds that are bleeding and threatening the life of the republic. What is the president's plan? Is it to heal all these wounds? No such thing. It is to heal one of the five and to leave the other four to bleed more than ever."

        VOICE ONE:

        While the debate continued in Washington, the situation in Texas and New Mexico got worse. Texas claimed a large part of New Mexico, including the capital, Santa Fe. Early in eighteen fifty, Texas sent a representative to Santa Fe to take control of the government.

        國會激烈辯論的同時,德克薩斯和新墨西哥的矛盾進一步惡化。德克薩斯聲稱,包括首府圣菲在內的新墨西哥大部分地區都應該歸德克薩斯所有。1850年年初,德克薩斯派代表前往圣菲接管政府。

        The United States military commander in New Mexico advised the people not to recognize the man. The governor of Texas was furious. He decided to send state soldiers to enforce Texas's claims in New Mexico. He said if trouble broke out, the United States government would be to blame.

        美國駐新墨西哥的軍事指揮官告誡當地人不要承認德克薩斯的代表。德克薩斯行政長官震怒,決定派兵進駐新墨西哥,捍衛領地。他還表示,如果出現麻煩,責任要由美國聯邦政府承擔。

        VOICE TWO:

        President Taylor rejected Texas's claims. He told his secretary of war to send an order to the military commander in New Mexico. The commander was to use force to oppose any attempt by Texas to seize the territory.

        泰勒總統不承認德克薩斯的領土要求,他讓戰爭部長向新墨西哥的軍事指揮官下達命令,如果德克薩斯試圖奪取不屬于自己的地域,就武力反擊。

        The secretary of war said he would not send such an order. He believed that if fighting began, southerners would hurry to the aid of Texas. And that, he thought, might be the start of a southern struggle against the federal government.

        戰爭部長回絕說,不能下達這樣的命令。他認為,如果沖突爆發,南方人一定會站在德克薩斯一邊,從而引發一場南方反對聯邦政府的斗爭。

        In a short time, the North and South would be at war. When the secretary of war refused to sign the order, President Taylor answered sharply. "Then I will sign the order myself!"

        眼看戰爭一觸即發,但是戰爭部長就是不肯下達命令。泰勒總統嚴厲地回答,“那我親自下令!”

        Taylor had been a general before becoming president. He said he would take command of the army himself to enforce the law. And he said he was willing to hang anyone who rebelled against the Union.

        泰勒原來是將軍出身。他表示,他會親自率兵捍衛法律,如果有人膽敢反抗聯邦的話,就要被吊死,絕不手軟。泰勒著手寫信給國會,商討新墨西哥的局勢,但是這封信沒有寫完。

        VOICE ONE:

        Zachary Taylor on his deathbed
        Zachary Taylor on his deathbed

        President Taylor began writing a message to Congress on the situation. He never finished it. On the afternoon of July fourth, eighteen fifty, Taylor attended an outdoor independence day ceremony. The ceremony was held at the place where a monument to America's first president, George Washington, was being built.

        1850年7月4號下午,泰勒前去參加一次慶祝美國建國獨立的露天活動。這次活動在建設中的美國開國總統喬治.華盛頓紀念碑前舉行。

        The day was very hot, and Taylor stood for a long time in the burning sun. That night, he became sick with pains in his stomach. Doctors were called to the White House. But none of their treatments worked.

        泰勒在炎炎烈日下站了很長時間,晚上開始肚子疼。醫生們急忙趕往白宮,但是治療無效。

        Five days later, President Taylor died. Vice President Millard Fillmore was sworn-in as president.

        五天后,泰勒去世,副總統菲爾莫爾宣誓繼任。

        (MUSIC)

        VOICE TWO:

        Fillmore was from New York state. His family was poor. His early education came not from school teachers, but from whatever books he could find. Later, Fillmore was able to study law. He became a successful lawyer. He also served in the United States Congress for eight years.

        The Whig Party chose him as its vice presidential candidate in the election of eighteen forty-eight. He served as vice president for about a year and a half before the death of President Taylor.

        VOICE ONE:

        Fillmore had disagreed with Taylor over the congressional compromise on slavery and the western territories. Unlike Taylor, Fillmore truly believed that the nation was facing a crisis. And he truly believed the compromise would help save the Union.

        在蓄奴和西部新增領土的問題上,菲爾莫爾跟泰勒總統意見分歧。菲爾莫爾堅信,國家面臨危機,只有妥協才能挽救合眾聯盟。

        Now, as president, Fillmore offered his complete support to the bill. Its chances of passing looked better than ever. Fillmore asked the old cabinet to resign. He named his own cabinet members. All were strong supporters of the union. All supported the compromise.

        繼任總統后,菲爾莫爾毫無保留地支持國會的妥協方案,給議案的通過帶來了曙光。菲爾莫爾要求原來的內閣全體辭職,重新任命內閣成員,這些人都是聯邦統一的堅定支持者,全都支持妥協議案。

        VOICE TWO:

        A painting of President Millard Fillmore by George Healy
        A painting of President Millard Fillmore by George Healy

        Congress debated the compromise throughout the summer of eighteen fifty. There were several proposals in the bill. Supporters decided not to vote on the proposals as one piece of legislation. They saw a better chance of success by trying to pass each proposal separately. Their idea worked.

        1850年整整一個夏天,妥協議案成了國會討論的焦點。議案包括多項內容。國會議員覺得,就各項提案分開投票,通過的可能性更大。結果證明果真如此。

        By the end of September, both the Senate and House of Representatives had approved all parts of the eighteen fifty compromise.

        到9月底的時候,國會參眾兩院已經通過了1850年妥協議案的全部內容。

        President Fillmore signed them into law. One part of the compromise permitted California to enter the Union as a free state. One established territorial governments in New Mexico and Utah. One settled the dispute between Texas and New Mexico. Another ended the slave trade in the District of Columbia.

        議案經總統菲爾莫爾簽字生效。妥協議案允許加利福尼亞做為自由州加入聯邦;在新墨西哥和猶他建立地區政府;解決了德克薩斯和新墨西哥之間的領土爭端;結束了首都哥倫比亞特區的奴隸買賣。

        (MUSIC)

        VOICE ONE:

        Many happy celebrations took place when citizens heard that President Fillmore had signed the eighteen fifty compromise. Many people believed the problem of slavery had been solved. They believed the Union had been saved.

        菲爾莫爾總統簽署1850年妥協法案的消息傳來,人民歡欣鼓舞。很多人以為,這樣一來,奴隸問題解決了,聯邦也得到了挽救。

        Others, however, believed the problem had only been postponed. They hoped the delay would give reasonable men of the North and South time to find a permanent answer to the issue of slavery. Time was running out.

        另外一些人卻相信,這不過是在拖延時間。他們希望,南北雙方的有識之士能藉著這段時間,找到奴隸問題的長久解決方法,因為時間已經越來越緊迫了。

        VOICE TWO:

        It was true that the eighteen fifty compromise had ended a national crisis. But both northern and southern extremists remained bitter. Those opposed to slavery believed the compromise law on runaway slaves violated the constitution.

        1850妥協法案確實制止了一場國家危機,但是南方和北方的極端主義者都心懷不滿。反對蓄奴的人相信,妥協法案對遣返逃亡奴隸的規定違反了憲法。

        The new law said negroes accused of being runaway slaves could not have a jury trial. It said government officials could send negroes to whoever claimed to own them. It said negroes could not appeal such a decision.

        根據法案,凡是被控逃亡的奴隸都不能接受陪審團的審判,政府官員可以把他們遣送給奴隸主,奴隸不得就此提出上訴。

        Those who supported slavery had a different idea of the compromise. They did not care about the constitutional rights of negroes. They considered the compromise a simple law for the return of valuable property. No law approved by Congress, and signed by the president, could change these beliefs.

        支持蓄奴的人對妥協法案有不同看法。他們關心的不是奴隸根據憲法享有的權利。在他們眼里,妥協法案就是一項簡單的物歸原主的法律。任何國會通過、總統簽署的法案都無法改變這一點。

        VOICE ONE:

        The issue of slavery was linked to the issue of secession. Did states have the right to leave the Union? If southern states rejected all compromises on slavery, did they have the right to secede? The signing of the eighteen fifty compromise cooled the debate for a time. But disagreement on the issues was deep. It would continue to build over the next ten years. Those were difficult years for America's presidents.

        奴隸制的存廢跟脫離聯邦這兩個問題緊密相關。各州有權脫離聯邦嗎?如果南方各州拒絕在奴隸問題上做出任何妥協的話,它們有權宣布脫離聯邦嗎?1850年妥協法案的簽署暫時緩解了爭端,但是這一理念上的分歧根深蒂固,在接下來的十年里日益激化,成為美國總統的艱苦歲月。

        Next week, we will tell how the situation affected the administration of President Millard Fillmore.

        (MUSIC)

        ANNOUNCER:

        Our program was written by Frank Beardsley. The narrators were Leo Scully and Larry West. Transcripts, MP3s and podcasts of our programs are online, along with historical images, at www.squishedblueberries.com. Join us again next week for THE MAKING OF A NATION -- an American history series in VOA Special English.

        ___

        This is program #79 of THE MAKING OF A NATION

        網友的學習評論(1條):
        作者:Alumni
        9-13-2013 20:55:13
        the president Tayler was not an able man compared to other presidents. it seemed that it really needs the better educated man as a president. Tayler died before in his full term of presidency due to sudden illness. it was something like another president who was dead because of standing outside too long in a severe cold day. the issue of slavery was a little postponed by the compromise policy but the dispute between the north and south were deep. the civil war was just a matter of time.
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