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Opinion

Mary Russo: It’s a question of social justice

Friday, November 21, 2014

To the editor: Given the negative emotions associated with abortion in the media (guilt, anger, shame, fear, etc.) it was heartening to read Emma Ayres’ clear and brave account of her own experience in guest column in the Gazette Nov. 15. It meant that she was free to make her own decision, but not in isolation or poverty. As a volunteer for the Abortion Rights Fund of Western Massachusetts, I …

Richard Suchocki: Praises Cinemark, Applebees for honoring veterans

Friday, November 21, 2014

To the editor: I would like to give kudos to Cinemark at Hampshire Mall and Applebees for the way they honored veterans on Veterans Day. Veterans were able to see the movie “Fury” with Brad Pitt for free and Applebees, decorated with red, white and blue balloons and thank-you notes obviously drawn by young children, were on the tables addressed to the veteran. …

Rich Feldman: Challenges ahead for those on BOTH sides of BID

Friday, November 21, 2014

To the editor: As those of us who endorsed the BID recover from the horrible shocks of the past few weeks, and those who brought it to an end contemplate next moves, I pose these challenges to all: ■ Care about and work for something larger than yourself, that has broad public benefit even if it required delayed individual gain. ■ Do something …

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William Brezinski: Peace Corps volunteers are front line of ‘American exceptionalism’

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

To the editor: This time of year, with Veterans Day, we recognize individuals and groups who have sacrificed personally and emotionally to build the United States. Our military is assigned overseas, lives in hostile environments and are placed in the middle of political unrest. Many give their lives …

Penny Burke: BID’s demise a loss for Northampton’s art scene

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

To the editor: Last week, I made an online comment in response to an article about the Northampton Business Improvement District and the mayor’s intention to convene a meeting of “downtown stakeholders.” I would like to share the comment with more Gazette readers and add a few remarks: …

Ann Hallstein: Letter-writer’s roster of Northampton downtown pioneers shows gender gap

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

To the editor: A letter to the editor in the Nov. 15-16 edition of the Gazette caught my eye — and stirred my ire. Alan Scheinman, one of the plaintiffs in the suit against the BID, wrote in defense of his case, “Some people attributed the success of …

Editorial: Northampton BID’s fatal flaw found in court files

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Buried deep in files attached to Hampshire Superior Court Judge John A. Agostini’s order last week that the Northampton Business Improvement District halt its operations is a cry for help that went unanswered. It is contained in two emails sent by the Northampton city clerk to another city …

Joe Blumenthal: Thoughts on the demise of the Northampton BID

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Nov. 12, 2014, was a sad day for downtown Northampton: Judge John A. Agostini ruled the Business Improvement District “null and void.” Thus ends a long and controversial chapter of our city’s history. The saga revolves …

Sara Weinberger: Looking for a common religious path in fractured world

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — When religion makes the headlines, the focus is on extremism. Religious law is reinterpreted to justify the oppression of others. Religious leaders invoke their moral superiority to enter our bedrooms and condemn everything from homosexuality to birth control. The name of god is invoked to launch …

Ellen Putnam: Loves her Gazette, and ‘Tonight’s Sky’

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

To the editor: I am often teased by my family for my cover-to-cover, vacation-pack-when-I’m-away reading of the Gazette. This approach has many benefits, however — among them, my daily enjoyment of Patrick Rowan’s “Tonight’s Sky,” found if one looks closely along with the weather forecast. It provides a …

Chris and DeAnne Riddle: Says investing in solar for house was worth it

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

To the editor: Following up on a recent letter to the editor concerning solar power, I’ll pass on our experience with solar hot water and electricity. First, we got rid of our oil-fired furnace, and replaced it with a Daikin air-source heat pump, an efficient electrical unit that …

J.M. Sorrell: BID was not needed in the first place

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

To the editor: With great interest, I have followed the development of the BID, the court case and the opinions pro and con. I was a condo owner in the BID district when it was formed. At a public hearing, I spoke clearly about my opposition to the …

Leonard A. Cohen: Lenient sentence in probation case suggests system is rigged

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

To the editor: Regarding an article in the Nov. 14 Gazette, “Hatfield man gets probation in rigged hiring case,” how is it that William Burke gets a slap on the wrist for his involvement in a decade of illegal hiring practices at the state Probation Department instead a …