SPEAKER: Order! Order! Mr. Simms, you do not have
the floor. Our first order of business will be an address by
Colonel Harry Burwell of the Continental Army. Colonel Harry Burwell.
BURWELL: You all know why I am here. I am not an orator and I will not try to
convince you of the worthiness of our cause. I am a soldier and we are at war.
From Philadelphia we expect the declaration of independence. Eight of the
thirteen colonies have levied money in support of a Continental Army. I ask
South Carolina to be the ninth.
SIMMS: Massachusetts and Virginia may be at war, but South Carolina is not.
BURWELL: It is not a war for the independence of one or two colonies but for
the independence of one nation.
WITHINGTON: And now yes, what nation is that?
HOWARD: An American nation.
WITHINGTON: There is no such a nation, and if you speak of one, that is
HOWARD: We are citizens of the American nation and our rights are being
threatened by a tyrant three thousand miles away.
MARTIN: Would you tell me, please, Mr. Howard, why should I trade one tyrant
three thousand miles away for three thousand tyrants one mile away? An elected
legislature can trample a man's rights as easily as a King can.
BURWELL: Captain Martin, I understood you to be a Patriot.
MARTIN: If you mean by Patriot, am I angry about the taxation without
representation? Yes I'm. Should the American colonies govern themselves
independently? I believe they can and they should. But if you're asking me am I
willing to go to war with England, then the answer is most definitely no.
MIDDLETON: This from the same Captain Benjamin Martin whose fury was so
famous during the Wilderness Campaign?
MARTIN: I was intemperate in my youth.
MIDDLETON: Temperance can be a convenient disguise for fear.
BURWELL: Mr. Middleton, I fought with Captain Martin under Washington in the
French and Indian War. There's not a man in this room, or anywhere, for that
matter, to whom I would more willingly trust my life.
MARTIN: There are alternatives to war. We take a case before the king. We
plea with him.
BURWELL: Yes we tried that.
MARTIN: Oh then we try again and then again if necessary to avoid a war.
BURWELL: Benjamin, I was at Bunker Hill. The British advanced three times and
we killed over seven hundred of them at point blank range and still they took
the ground. That is the measure of their resolve. If your principles dictate
independence, then war is the only way. It has come to that.
MARTIN: I have seven children. My wife is dead. And who's to care for them if
I go to war?
BURWELL: Wars are not fought only by childless men.
MARTIN: Granted. But mark my
words: this war will be fought not on the frontier or on some
distant battlefield. But amongst us, among our homes. Our children will learn it
with their own eyes. And the innocent will die with the rest of us. I will not
fight. Because I will not fight, I will not cast a
vote that will send others to fight in my stead.
BURWELL: And your principles?
MARTIN: I'm a parent. I don't have the luxury of principles.
1. Have the floor
这个片语的意思可不是"有地板"，而是“有发言权”，做动词用，例如：Mr. Nixon has the floor. 尼克松先生发言。