Celebrating our heroes
The celebration of this public holiday was enacted into law subject to the passing of the Public Holidays Amendment Act 2008. The Bermuda Government thought it expedient to amend the Public Holidays Act 1947 to establish National Heroes Day.
By rule of law, the government can declare any day of the week a public holiday.
Upon further research I also discovered that the Governor of Bermuda, by proclamation, may also declare any day to be a public holiday.
In recognition of that, perhaps I should make an appointment with the Governor.
While being served the usual tea and crumpets we could discuss imposing another public holiday or two so people could relax, and chill from their hard labour.
By definition, a hero or heroine is a person of distinguished courage or ability, who is admired for their brave deeds and noble qualities; a person who, in the opinion of others, has heroic qualities or has performed a heroic act and is regarded as a model or ideal.
The word national is derived from the root word nation, which by definition constitutes an independent sovereign state that consists of a large aggregate of people united by common descent, history, culture, or language.
Notwithstanding that we should honour our heroes and bestow upon them the accolades they deserve for their public service to the community, we must be politically correct in that endeavour.
To be honoured as a “National Hero” would therefore imply, by law, that you would have to be a citizen of a sovereign state independent of Great Britain, which to date we are not.
Being mindful of this historical fact does not diminish the right or desire to honour those in our community that have played and continue to play a significant role.
One person that springs to mind is Cordelia Fubler. She can at best be described as Bermuda's “Florence Nightingale”; one of the heroines of the medical field in Bermuda.
For a period of 75 years she served as a nurse and midwife. She was instrumental in assisting in the birth and delivery of hundreds of Bermudians, and was especially gifted in treating patients who suffered from pneumonia during the latter part of the 19th century and the first quarter of the 20th century up until her death, at the age of 97, in 1957.
I can indeed list a few more outstanding Bermudians that are truly deserving of public recognition but time does not allow me to do so. I shall therefore continue to honour and cherish our current list of National Heroes and any future appointees that shall be made.