letters to the editor
letters to the editor
How much funding does Bethel Park Fire Department need?

As you probably know, Bethel Park passed a dedicated fund act to support the fire company. However, we continue to receive yearly letters requesting funding for its support.

Is the dedicated funding tax insufficient? Initially, we were told that only 50 percent of the residents voluntarily supported the fund drive. Now, they receive 100 percent through the dedicated funding plus 50 percent (I guess) through the yearly letter drive. How much do they need?

I have and always will support the needs of the Bethel Park Fire Department. They do a great job, but if they need additional funds, then it should be through council raising the dedicated tax and not through any additional yearly letter campaign for funds that some people will/will not support. Any clarification on this matter for the residents of Bethel Park would be greatly appreciated.

Jim Mitterer

Bethel Park

editorials
Bruce Jenner is a true role model

Imagine waking up every morning and looking in the mirror, only to look at a body that doesn’t feel like yours. Imagine being uncomfortable in your own skin, and, because your body and mind don’t match up whatsoever, feeling like you are living a lie. Every single day.

Now, imagine that your life is constantly documented because not only do cameras for a reality show follow you around day in and day out, but the paparazzi does, too. And this happens because you are a celebrity who sprung to fame because you were using your body as it was designed, going against the way your mind felt.

This isn’t a hypothetical situation. This is the life of former Olympic champion Bruce Jenner, who came out as transgender to Diane Sawyer in a moving interview that aired April 24.

To say Jenner is brave is putting it mildly. He (following the lead of other media, and Jenner’s preference, we will use male pronouns and refer to him as Bruce) has opened a discussion that is very new to many people – it’s worth noting that spell check doesn’t even view “transgender” as a word.

Jenner has shed light on the difference between gender identity and sexual preference. He has likely made it possible for other members of the transgender community to tell their friends and family that they are just like Bruce. He has hopefully made it possible for the families of transgendered people to understand and embrace them, as opposed to shunning them or trying to “fix” them, the way one Ohio teen’s family did, leading to the girl’s suicide late last year.

The outpouring of support for him has been incredible, and we are thrilled that the world has embraced his change and isn’t ridiculing it.

In the 1970s, many looked up to Jenner because of his athleticism and determination. Today, many more look up to him because of his courage and determination.

We are proud of Jenner, and look forward to seeing his transition evolve. We are also proud of the way his news has been received, and feel that we are a step closer to a more tolerant time.