[時事英文] 急速退步的美國,已不再是我們想像中那個國家

[時事英文‘We’re No. 28! And Dropping!’

急速退步的美國,已不再是我們想像中那個國家

 When you read this article, please think about the writer’s intent. Are his criticisms fair?

文字轉語音: https://bit.ly/2Yw0yD5

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《紐約時報》:

This should be a wake-up call: New data suggest that the United States is one of just a few countries worldwide that is slipping backward.

  1. a wake-up call 警示,警鐘
  2. slip back 倒退

這應該是一個警鐘:新數據表明,美國是世界上少數幾個正在倒退的國家之一。

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The newest Social Progress Index, shared with me before its official release Thursday morning, finds that out of 163 countries assessed worldwide, the United States, Brazil and Hungary are the only ones in which people are worse off than when the index began in 2011. And the declines in Brazil and Hungary were smaller than America’s.

  1. assess 評價;評定;對…估價
  2. Social Progress Index 社會進步指數
  3. the official release of (n.) …的正式發布

在週四上午正式發布之前,我得到了最新的社會進步指數 (Social Progress Index)。該指數發現,在全世界接受評估的163個國家中,只有美國、巴西和匈牙利人民的生活比2011年該指數創建時更糟糕,而巴西和匈牙利的下降幅度小於美國。

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The index, inspired by research of Nobel-winning economists, collects 50 metrics of well-being — nutrition, safety, freedom, the environment, health, education and more — to measure quality of life. Norway comes out on top in the 2020 edition, followed by Denmark, Finland and New Zealand. South Sudan is at the bottom, with Chad, Central African Republic and Eritrea just behind.

  1. metrics 指標
  2. the quality of life 生活質量

該指數受諾貝爾經濟學獎得主的研究啟發,收集營養、安全、自由、環境、健康、教育等50項幸福指數來衡量生活質量。在2020年版中,挪威高居榜首,其次是丹麥、芬蘭和紐西蘭。南蘇丹墊底,排在它前面的是乍得、中非共和國和厄立特里亞。

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The United States ranks No. 1 in the world in quality of universities, but No. 91 in access to quality basic education. The U.S. leads the world in medical technology, yet we are No. 97 in access to quality health care.

  1. rank (v./n.) 排名
  2. access to (使用某物的)權利

美國在大學質量方面排名世界第一,但在獲得優質基礎教育方面排名第91位。美國在醫療技術方面領先世界,但在獲得高質量醫療服務方面排名第97位。

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The Social Progress Index finds that Americans have health statistics similar to those of people in Chile, Jordan and Albania, while kids in the United States get an education roughly on par with what children get in Uzbekistan and Mongolia. A majority of countries have lower homicide rates, and most other advanced countries have lower traffic fatality rates and better sanitation and internet access.

  1. roughly on par with… 與…大致相當
  2. homicide rates 兇殺率
  3. fatality rates 死亡率
  4. better sanitation 衛生條件

社會進步指數發現,美國人的健康統計數據與智利、約旦和阿爾巴尼亞人不相上下,而美國孩子所受的教育與烏茲別克斯坦和蒙古孩子所受的教育大致相當。大多數國家的兇殺率比美國低,大多數其他發達國家的交通死亡率比美國低,衛生條件比美國好,互聯網接入條件也比美國好。

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The United States has high levels of early marriage — most states still allow child marriage in some circumstances — and lags in sharing political power equally among all citizens. America ranks a shameful No. 100 in discrimination against minorities.

  1. have high levels of… 有很高…的率
  2. in some circumstances 在某些情況下
  3. lag in… 在…滯後
  4. share political power 分享政治力量
  5. shameful 可恥的,丟臉的
  6. discrimination against minorities 對少數群體的歧視

美國早婚率很高——大多數州在某些情況下仍然允許童婚——而且在所有公民平等分享政治權力方面也很落後。在對少數族裔的歧視問題上,美國可恥地排在第100位。

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The data for the latest index predates Covid-19, which has had a disproportionate impact on the United States and seems likely to exacerbate the slide in America’s standing. One new study suggests that in the United States, symptoms of depression have risen threefold since the pandemic began — and poor mental health is associated with other risk factors for well-being.

  1. index 指數
  2. predate 早於…存在(或發生)
  3. a disproportionate impact on 對……的影響不成比例
  4. exacerbate 使惡化;使加重;使加劇
  5. standing 聲譽,名聲;級別;地位
  6. symptoms of depression 抑鬱症的症狀
  7. be associated with 與相關聯的
  8. risk factors 風險因素

最新指數的數據收集是在新冠病毒之前,新冠病毒對美國的影響非常大,似乎有可能加劇美國排名的下滑。一項新的研究表明,在美國,憂鬱症狀自大流行開始以來增加了三倍,而心理健康狀況不佳與其他影響幸福感的風險因素有關。

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Michael Green, the C.E.O. of the group that puts out the Social Progress Index, notes that the coronavirus will affect health, longevity and education, with the impact particularly large in both the United States and Brazil. The equity and inclusiveness measured by the index seem to help protect societies from the virus, he said. “Societies that are inclusive, tolerant and better educated are better able to manage the pandemic,” Green said.

  1. longevity 長壽; 壽命
  2. equity 公平性
  3. inclusiveness 包容性
  4. tolerant 寬容的
  5. manage the pandemic 控制疫情

發布社會進步指數組織的首席執行官麥可·格林(Michael Green)指出,新冠病毒將影響健康、壽命和教育,對美國和巴西的影響尤其大。他說,該指數所衡量的公平性和包容性,似乎有助於保護社會免受病毒侵害。「包容、寬容和受教育程度較高的社會能夠更好地控制疫情,」格林說。

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The decline of the United States over the last decade in this index — more than any country in the world — is a reminder that we Americans face structural problems that predate President Trump and that festered under leaders of both parties. Trump is a symptom of this larger malaise, and also a cause of its acceleration.

  1. a reminder 一個提醒
  2. face structural problems 面臨結構性問題
  3. fester 潰爛
  4. a symptom of this larger malaise 這種萎靡/問題的症狀
  5. a cause of its acceleration 加速的原因

在過去十年中,美國在該指數上的下滑超過世界上任何國家,這提醒我們,美國人面臨著結構性問題,它們在川普總統之前就已經存在,並且來自兩黨的領導人使其不斷惡化。川普是這個大問題的一個癥狀,也是這種問題加速的一個原因。

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That’s why this is an election like that of 1932. That was the year American voters decisively rejected Herbert Hoover’s passivity and gave Franklin Roosevelt an electoral mandate — including a flipped Senate — that laid the groundwork for the New Deal and the modern middle class. But first we need to acknowledge the reality that we are on the wrong track.

  1. decisively reject 斷地拒絕了
  2. passivity 消極態度
  3. an electoral mandate 通過選舉的授權
  4. lay the groundwork 奠定了基礎
  5. the New Deal 羅斯福新政: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Deal
  6. the middle class 中產階級
  7. acknowledge reality 承認現實
  8. on the wrong track 走錯了路

這就是為什麼這次選舉類似1932年的那一次。就在那一年,美國選民果斷地拒絕了赫伯特·胡佛(Herbert Hoover)的消極態度,並通過選舉向富蘭克林·羅斯福(Franklin Roosevelt)授權——包括參議院的翻轉——這為新政和現代中產階級奠定了基礎。但首先,我們需要承認現實,我們走錯了路。

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We Americans like to say “We’re No. 1.” But the new data suggest that we should be chanting, “We’re No. 28! And dropping!” Let’s wake up, for we are no longer the country we think we are.

  1. chant 高呼
  2. Let’s wake up. 我們醒醒吧。

我們美國人喜歡說「我們是第一」。但新的數據表明,我們應該高呼:「我們是第28!而且還在下降!」醒醒吧,因為我們不再是我們想像中的那個國家。

《紐約時報》完整報導:https://nyti.ms/3mqUrdp

 圖片出處: https://bit.ly/3kzAakg

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對新聞英文和批判性思考有興趣的同學也可以參考我的課程:https://bit.ly/3eTHIvH

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