History tells us several hundred onlookers clambered to the top of Beacon Hill and watched the Battle of Bunker Hill as it unfolded in June 1775.
It was, of all days in this immediate area, a historic moment that froze in time forever the bravery and the boldness of Americans who fought the British to break the shackles of servitude put upon them by having to give allegiance to a king they had no interest in and a nation that was not their own.
Almost 240 years later, the Battle of Bunker Hill remains etched in our national history as a momentous day.
Locally, however, it is a Suffolk County holiday generating more governmental efforts to end it than a holiday to make sure the message of that battle endures.
Congressman Michael Capuano is now suggesting that the Battle of Bunker Hill be turned into a national holiday.
Perhaps such a holiday would remind the folks in Washington that even then we weren’t democrats or republicans. Rather, we were Americans wanting what was best for our nation which was coming into shape and form.
Bunker Hill was not suicide battle but it was a battle the Americans could never win.
There were no discussions about the lopsided nature of the battle that was coming.
There was a near to complete understanding that by resisting the British with armed force it was going to lead to a much grander battle in the days and months to come for the control of the East coast of the continent and later on, for control of the continent itself.
There were very few divisions, indeed, there was the absence of divisiveness. There was no name calling or political meandering or weak second guessing meant to turn the brave away from the battle that was coming.
Important in all of this is that when people come to this country today from other places in the world to become citizens here, they don’t come here to be Democrats or Republicans. They come to be Americans and they expect the freedoms that Americans enjoy, freedoms which they have fought for and died for.
The brave men who cut down the British on their first march up to the top of the hill in June 1775 weren’t Democrats.
The brave men who cut down the British on their second march up to the top of the hill weren’t Republicans.
The brave men who ran out of ammunition as the third wave of British came up to the top of the hill attached their bayonets to their muskets and died like heroes fighting hand to hand.
These brave men all were Americans.
We will aid Congressman Capuano in honoring the Battle of Bunker Hill with a national holiday. We will work toward that. It is the right thing to do.