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肯尼迪大法官在北大的演讲

(2009-04-23 18:35:55)
标签:

美文

杂谈

分类: 美文

 

Speech of Justice Anthony M. Kennedy On STLs Dedication Ceremony

美国最高法院肯尼迪大法官在北京大学国际法学院创院典礼上的演讲

2008年11月17日

      

 In the United States our law school professors have immense talent, and law schools are influential in government and in society at large. As some of you know, our law review system relies on students who are just beginning to study and to explore the law to engage in formal criticism of decisions made by judges. Judges, of course, are senior to students in years and in experience. But the judges respect and welcome the criticism from those who are just beginning to study the law.

 在美国,法学院的教授们都是极其具有才干的,法学院对于政府和整个的社会都是具有影响力的。你们中的一些人知道,我们的法律审查制度依靠我们那些刚刚开始学习法律和探索法律的学生,他们从事着对法官的决定的正式的批评活动。当然,法官在年龄上和经验上都高于学生,但是法官尊重和欢迎来自这些初学法律者的批评。

Today we see a different dynamic. Alongside the political science undergrad we find economics, chemistry and literature majors, or even find students have made a professional mark on the world in one field or who have an advanced degree and who are now eager to bring that experience to our venerable profession.

 今天,我们看到了多样性。除了政治学的毕业生,我们还有经济学,化学和文学专业,甚至我们有的学生在某一领域已经取得了引人注目的专业成就,或者,已经得到了一个更高的学位,现在渴望将那一种经历引入到我们这一古老庄严的领域。

 We can say that law schools train students how to think about simple things in a formal way. This is the path to a world of thought that discovers moral principles and social responsibilities in everyday activities.

 我们可以说,法学院教学生如何用规范的形式去思考简单的事物。这是一条道路,通往这样一条思想的世界:在日常的活动中发现道德原则和社会责任。

 If the law student is to succeed in this worthwhile project, he or she must be patient. the student finds that he or she is required to spend hours interpreting a few little words, or even the punctuation!, in a contract or a statute. To begin with it is necessary to teach certain elementary rules and principles for interpreting documents, enforcing contracts, and imposing liability just so that we can have simple rules to begin managing an evermore complex society. We want to teach a means for reconciling disputes and reaching common agreement through civil, productive, rational, respectful, honest discussion and debate. A student in a law school should learn to argue a difficult proposition in a graceful, diplomatic, courteous, logical way that shows at all times the respect that he or she has for all others engaged in the process.

 如果法学院的学生想要在这项值得去做的事业上取得成功,他们必须有耐心。学生们发现,他或她被要求花数个小时去解释一纸合同或一部法律中的几个小词,甚至标点!在一开始,有必要教授某些解释文件,执行合同和施加责任的基本的规则和原则,有了这些简单的规则我们才能开始经营一个愈加复杂的世界。我们希望教一种能够调解争论和达成共识的方法,通过文明的,富有建设性的,理性的,尊重他人的,诚实的讨论和论辩。一个法学院的学生应该学会用一种优雅的,老练的,谦逊的,富有逻辑的方法去论辩,自始至终表现出对于其他参与到这个过程中的人们的尊重。

  For many years my message to law school teachers has been that each of these variations in the Socratic Method may have a certain utility. And it is probably not necessary for the student to know which variation the professor is using. It is of immense importance, though, for the professor to know the objective of Socratic dialogue. Professors must never cease to ask, and to formulate with considerable precision, what their goal is.

 这么多年来,我一直向法学院教师们传达的就是,苏格拉底式教学法的每一种形式都具有一定的实用性。学生们可能没有必要去知道老师使用的是哪一种形式。但是教授们必须不停地去问,并且是相当精确地,问他们的目标到底是什么。

 The law, perhaps to a greater extent than other disciplines, does concentrate on the rules and precedents announced in the past. The system of teaching about the past means that we have a formal system for transmitting our whole legal culture from one generation to the next. You cannot transmit what you do not understand. You cannot preserve what you do not revere. You cannot defend what you do not know.

法律,在更大的程度上比其他的学科都更注重规则和先例。教先例的传统意味着我们有一个正式的制度向下一代传承我们整个的法律文化。你不能传授你不理解的东西。你不会保存你不尊敬的东西。你不可能去捍卫你自己都不知道的东西。

 In the Anglo-American system, of course, precedent is a fundamental precept.The Doctrine of Stare Decisis is the rule binding us to earlier precedents unless a powerful reason is shown to reject them.

 当然,在英美法系中,先例是基本的规则。照先例办事的规则使得我们要受到先例的约束,除非有强大的理由可以拒绝它们。

 It teaches the importance of precedent but cautions that it will not always suffice for a new era.

 它告诉我们遵循先例的重要性,同时告诫我们先例不会永远满足新的时代。

  Mencius put to his time─and puts to our time─the problem of the traveler and the child at the well. The traveler is walking in a distant region, far from his own home. He sees a child about to fall from the little wall surrounding a well. Must the traveler go to the rescue?

 孟子向他的时代——也向我们的时代——提出了这样一个问题,一个关于旅行者和井上的小孩的问题。旅行者行走在一个遥远的地方,远离他的故乡。他看到一个小孩快要从井边的小墙上掉下来。这位旅行者必须去营救吗?

 My assumption is both in the time when Mencius lived and still today all decent people would say there is an answer. Whether or not the law requires the rescue, morality does. If the traveler who rushes to the rescue seeks to gain friendship with the childs parents or to gain the approval of neighbors and friends to enhance his own reputation, his motives come down to self interest. Perhaps that is not all bad, for many societies reward actions they approve. But there is another explanation for the moral duty to rescue. Mencius tells us the duty to rescue exists in part because the failure to do so would cause shame. And a sense of shame is the beginning of righteousness. A sense of decorum is the beginning of propriety; a sense of righting a wrong is the beginning of justice; a sense of compassion is the beginning of humanity.

 我的假定是,不管是在孟子的时代,还是在今天,所有体面正直的人都会说这个问题只有一个答案。不管法律要求不要求,道德要求我们去营救。如果旅行者跑去营救是为了获取同小孩父母的友谊,或者是为了获取邻居们和朋友们的赞许,或者是为了加强他自己的声誉,他的动机就降到了自我利益的层面。但这或许不坏,许多社会奖励它们赞许的行为。孟子告诉我们,营救的义务存在部分是因为如果不这样做就会导致羞耻。羞耻感是正直的开端。得体感是礼仪的开端。矫枉感是正义的开端。同情感是人性的开端。

The fact that for centuries we have not agreed upon, or even discovered, certain universal truths is not cause for detachment and indifference. By throwing ourselves into these philosophical inquiries and debate, we can establish that link with the past that is essential to our identity with members of human kind. It shows that we care about the definitions of morality and decency, definitions that should shape our future.

 几个世纪以来,我们对一些普遍的真理没有达成共识不是置身事外和冷漠的理由。将我们抛向这些哲理的质询和论辩中,我们可以建立起同过去的联系,而这对我们作为人类的成员的身份认同是必要的。它表明我们在意道德与尊严的定义,这些定义塑造我们的未来。

 If we find in the reaches of higher philosophy, in the depths of the law and its teaching, a discipline of thought and an elegance of meaning then we can find ways to strengthen the human bond between us. For one scholar the law can begin as a deeply personal undertaking. Some scholars reflect in lonely quiet to find universal ideas that relate to our existence and to discover a higher purpose within the classic traditions of philosophy, the arts, and the sciences. Judges work this way sometimes at the outset of deciding a case. Holmes called it "the secret joy of isolated thought."

 如果我们能在更高的哲学的高度,能够在法律以及法律教育的最深处,在思维中发现一种纪律性,在意义中发现一种优雅,那么,我们就能够找到我们与全人类之间联系的纽带。对于一个法律学者来说,法律在开始都是作为一种深深的个人的担当的。一些学者在宁静的孤独中反思,去发现与我们的存在相联系的普遍的观念,在哲学的经典传统中,在艺术中,在科学中,去寻找更高的目的。法官们有时候在决定一个案件的刚开始的时候会使用这种方法。霍姆斯称之为“孤独思索的隐秘乐趣。”

 On entering this exciting school each new generation, each new class, each new student will have an opportunity and, at the same time, a solemn responsibility. In this place all who study and all who teach must seek always to define and defend the Rule of Law and to insist that it is the birthright of all persons. For centuries and until the present day there have been rulers who sought to twist the idea of law and to appropriate it for themselves and their own false purposes. In my own lifetime Hitler and Stalin thought of law simply in terms of raw power. They were willing to suppress, even to murder, those who asked for nothing more than simple justice. Their lies were transparently false, yet the regimes founded on those lies fooled millions and were hard to defeat. Their contempt for the Rule of Law was obvious.

 进入到这所令人兴奋的学校,每一代新人,每一个新的班级,每一个新学生都将拥有机会,同时,拥有独一无二的责任。在这个地方,学的人和教的人都必须永远去寻求定义和捍卫法治,并且坚持它是所有人与生俱来的权利。许多个世纪以来,直到今天,总有一些统治者试图去扭曲法律,试图假借法律的名义为他们自己,为他们错误的目的服务。在我生活过的时代中,希特勒和斯大林将法律视之为赤裸裸的权力。他们想去镇压,甚至去谋杀那些仅仅是要求简单的公正的人。他们的谎言是显而易见的,但是他们的政权就建立在这样的谎言之上,并且愚弄了成千上万的人,最终不可收拾。他们的反法治是明显的。

 Then too there are subtle, less obvious attacks on the Rule of Law. We must be on guard against these distortions so we do not lose confidence in law as the means to enable all of us to seek and to find justice in our own time. Your duty, your careers must be based on the idea that the Rule of Law is more than order. It is justice. It is dignity. It is freedom and compassion for all of human kind.

 也有一些微妙的,不那么明显的对于法治的攻击。我们必须警惕这些对于法治的歪曲,以至于我们不至于失去了对法律的信心,将法律作为使我们大家在我们的时代能够寻找和找到正义的一种途径的信心。你们的职责,你们的事业必须建立在这样一种观念之上,即法治不只是秩序。它是正义。它是尊严。它是自由以及对全人类的同情。

 These are a few thoughts from one who began law school half a century ago. The study of law was a fascinating challenge then, and it remains so today. All of us who are here to participate in this dedication are willing to ensure this is a place that makes a lasting contribution to preserving the Rule of Law. And then this law school will take its place among the fine law schools of the world.

 这是半个世纪以前一个初次踏入法学院的学生的想法,学习法律是迷人的挑战,到今天,这种情怀仍未改变。在座的我们所有参加典礼的人都相信这是一个可以为法治的道路做出持续的贡献的地方。并且,这所法学院将会跻身于世界最优秀的法学院之列。

 节选自http://stl.szpku.edu.cn/en/article.asp?articleid=62

 

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