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Community Outreach: WEI Bilingual Public Lecture on January 25 2016

The Whole Elephant Institute Bilingual Training Center offered a bilingual lecture on Monday, January 25, 2016 to help 495 students to review bilingual studies on two subjects: "American Citizenship Test" and "Common Sense" by Thomas Paine. Also, the center is now starting to prepare for the upcoming three-month bilingual training workshop, which is scheduled to take place in May-July 2016. The interested students are encouraged to complete the issued examination for the first semester before invitation letters will be sent to the students who passed the exam.

全象学院双语培训中心于二零一六年美东时间一月二十五日晚十一点十分开始通过微信平台教授双语课,复习《美国公民入籍考试一百题》和托马斯·潘恩的《常识》。四百九十五位学员参加。全象学院双语培训中心己开始准备今年在纽约市的三个月双语培训作坊,为国内外有志于参加筹办全美第一系列以中西传统文化合璧为特色的中文特许公立学校 Public Charter School 的有识之士提供中英双语职业培训。计划在今年五月到七月举办。

The voice recording of the lecture can be downloaded from the following site:
录言可在以下网址下载:


The bilingual text of this lecture is posted here:
双语授课内容:

*11. What is the economic system in the United States?/美国的经济制度是什么?
答:Capitalist economy /资本主义经济
答:Market economy /市场经济
12. What is the “rule of law”?/“法治”是什么
答:Everyone must follow the law. /人人都应遵守法律
答:Leaders must obey the law. /领导人必须遵守法律
答:Government must obey the law. /政府必须遵守法律
答:No one is above the law. /没有任何人在法律之上
B. System of Government/政府体制
*13. Name one branch or part of the government./列举政府体制的一个分支或部门
答:Congress /国会
答:Legislative /立法部门
答:President /总统
答:Executive /行政部门
答:The courts /法院
答:Judicial /司法部门
14. What stops one branch of government from becoming too powerful?/什么防止一个政府分支变得过于强大?
答:Checks and balances /制衡
答:Separation of powers /权力分立
15. Who is in charge of the executive /谁负责行政部门?
答:The President /总统
16. Who makes federal laws?/谁制定联邦法律?
答:Congress /国会
答:Senate and House (of Representatives)/参议院和众议院
答:(U.S. or national) legislature /(美国或国家)立法部门
*17. What are the two parts of the U.S. Congress?/美国国会由哪两个部分组成?
答:The Senate and House (of Representatives) /参议院与众议院
18. How many U.S. Senators are there?/美国参议员有几位?
答:One hundred (100) /一百(100) 位
19. We elect a U.S. Senator for how many years?/我们选出的美国参议员任职多少年?
答:Six (6) /六年
*20. Who is one of your state’s U.S. Senators?/您所在州的现任一位美国参议员的名字是什么?
答:请点击查看您所在州的现任参议员。

Students are instructed to find the Senators from each state by licking on the following link:


As an example, students are instructed to clink the State of New York to find the following information:

New York

New York became the 11th state to join the Union on July 26, 1788. New York’s first two senators, Rufus King and Philip Schuyler, took office on July 16, 1789. New York’s longest-serving senators include Jacob Javits (1957-1981) and Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1977-2001). Among those who rose to leadership positions are John Laurance, who served as the Senate’s president pro tempore, and James Wadsworth, Jr., who served as Republican Party whip. In 2001 Hillary R. Clinton became the first former First Lady to serve as a U.S. senator.

The two senators of New York State is: Senator Kristen Gillibrand and Senator Charles Schumer. On the link for Senator Kristen Gillibrand, the following letter to the general public is found.

"I believe accountability and transparency are essential to open and honest government.  As your Senator, I am proud to lead by example as the first member of Congress ever to post their official daily meetings online every day, so New Yorkers can see who is lobbying their Senator and for what.  I also strongly believe that taxpayers have a right to know how their representatives plan to spend their tax dollars, which is why I was among the first to voluntarily list all the earmark projects that I request federal funds for.
In addition, too often decisions in Washington have been dominated by special interests.  Over time this has diminished the public's view of their elected leaders.  As your Senator, I promise that all my decisions will be guided by what is best for New York, which is why I voluntarily post my personal financial disclosure forms online, so you can know that I work for you, not the special interest lobby.
Lastly, I think the media and the public have a very important role to play in our democracy and keeping elected officials honest, which is why I will continue to support measures to make more federal information available to the public on the internet and will advocate for shield laws for journalists and whistleblowers.
Earning your trust and operating my office in an open and transparent way is a priority for me.

Sincerely,

Kristen Gillibrand

The students are instructed to read this as their homework and will be read in bilingual format in the lecture on next Monday.

Then the students are led to review "Common Sense" by Thomas Paine:

Some convenient tree will afford them a State House, under the branches of which the whole Colony may assemble to deliberate on public matters. It is more than probable that their first laws will have the title only of Regulations and be enforced by no other penalty than public disesteem. In this first parliament every man by natural right will have a seat.
But as the Colony encreases, the public concerns will encrease likewise, and the distance at which the members may be separated, will render it too inconvenient for all of them to meet on every occasion as at first, when their number was small, their habitations near, and the public concerns few and trifling. This will point out the convenience of their consenting to leave the legislative part to be managed by a select number chosen from the whole body, who are supposed to have the same concerns at stake which those have who appointed them, and who will act in the same manner as the whole body would act were they present. If the colony continue encreasing, it will become necessary to augment the number of representatives, and that the interest of every part of the colony may be attended to, it will be found best to divide the whole into convenient parts, each part sending its proper number: and that the ELECTED might never form to themselves an interest separate from the ELECTORS, prudence will point out the propriety of having elections often: because as the ELECTED might by that means return and mix again with the general body of the ELECTORS in a few months, their fidelity to the public will be secured by the prudent reflection of not making a rod for themselves. And as this frequent interchange will establish a common interest with every part of the community, they will mutually and naturally support each other, and on this, (not on the unmeaning name of king,) depends the STRENGTH OF GOVERNMENT, AND THE HAPPINESS OF THE GOVERNED.
Here then is the origin and rise of government; namely, a mode rendered necessary by the inability of moral virtue to govern the world; here too is the design and end of government, viz. Freedom and security. And however our eyes may be dazzled with show, or our ears deceived by sound; however prejudice may warp our wills, or interest darken our understanding, the simple voice of nature and reason will say, 'tis right.
I draw my idea of the form of government from a principle in nature which no art can overturn, viz. that the more simple any thing is, the less liable it is to be disordered, and the easier repaired when disordered; and with this maxim in view I offer a few remarks on the so much boasted constitution of England. That it was noble for the dark and slavish times in which it was erected, is granted. When the world was overrun with tyranny the least remove therefrom was a glorious rescue. But that it is imperfect, subject to convulsions, and incapable of producing what it seems to promise is easily demonstrated.
Absolute governments, (tho' the disgrace of human nature) have this advantage with them, they are simple; if the people suffer, they know the head from which their suffering springs; know likewise the remedy; and are not bewildered by a variety of causes and cures. But the constitution of England is so exceedingly complex, that the nation may suffer for years together without being able to discover in which part the fault lies; some will say in one and some in another, and every political physician will advise a different medicine.

某一棵地点适中的大树将供给他们一座大礼堂,全体移民区的人可以在树荫下聚会,讨论公共的问题。很可能,他们第一批的法律只是称为条例,在推行的时候至多以公众的鄙视作为违犯条例的惩罚。在这第一次的会议中,人人自然都有权利占据一个席位。
可是,随着移民区的发展,公众所关心的事情也增加了,同时成员间彼此可能离得很远,不便像从前那样大家每次都聚在一起,而当初他们的人数不多,住处很近,公众所关心的事情是寥寥无几的和琐碎的。这种情况表明,他们同意从全体成员中选出一些优秀的人来专门管理立法工作,是有其方便的地方的;这些人应该关心那些选派他们的人所关心的事情,一切做法同全体成员亲自出席时所采取的一样。如果移民区继续发展,就有必要扩大代表的名额,使移民区的各部分的利益都可以受到照顾,同时最好是把整个区域分成若干适当的部分,每一部分派出相应的人数,这样一来,当选人就永远不会独自关心一种与选举人毫不相干的利益,并且为了审慎起见,时常举行选举是适当的:通过这种方式,当选人有可能在几个月以后回去再同群众混杂在一起,他们就不敢自找苦吃,从而他们对于公众的忠实也就会有所保证。因为这种不时的互换会同社会的每一部分建立共同的利害关系,各部分就会自然地互相支援,正是基于这一点(不是基于帝王的无意义的名号),才产生政府的力量和被统治者的幸福。
这便是政府的起源和兴起;也就是说,这是由于人们德行的软弱无力而有必要采用的治理世界的方式;由此也可看出政府的意图和目的,即自由与安全。不管我们的眼睛在纷然杂陈的事物面前如何眼花缭乱,或者我们的耳朵如何受音响的欺骗,也不管偏颇的见解如何把我们的意志引入歧途,或者个人的利害关系如何迷了我们的心窍,自然和理性的坦率的呼声也毕竟会说这是对的。我对于政体的这种想法,是从一项无法推翻的自然原理推论出来的,也就是说,任何事物愈是简单,它愈不容易发生紊乱,即使发生紊乱也比较容易纠正;根据这项原理,我现在想对大肆吹嘘的英国政体说几句话。在制定英国政体的黑暗的奴隶时代,它是光荣的,这一点我并不否认。在宇内暴政肆虐的时候,尽量不脱离这种政体,那也是一种光荣的出路。可是,要论证现在这个政体是不完备的、不稳固的、不能产生它应有的效果的,那倒是容易的。专制政体(虽然这是人类本性的耻辱)有这样的好处,就是它们来得简单,如果人民受苦遭难,他们知道他们的苦难是从谁的头脑里产生出来的;也知道补救的办法;没有五花八门的原因和救苦消灾的方法使他们茫然失措。可是英国的政体十分复杂,全国人民可能受苦多年而根本发现不出这是哪一方面的过错;有些人会这样说,有些人会那样说,每一个政治医生开的药方也各不相同。



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