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Marion W. Copeland: Headline not fair to those non-human animals

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

To the editor: While I have no argument at all with Marilyn Marks’ Nov. 17 guest column, the choice of a headline — ”Naming all the animals of racism” — seems totally inappropriate to me. The only animal I know that has anything to do with racism and certainly with “racial microaggressions” is the human animal. The headline itself strikes me as a speciesist microagression, all the more egregious because …

Hill Boss: Students at Smith show contempt for value of free press

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

To the editor: The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is dead at Smith College — or at least it was one day last week. When the students at a rally held on an open campus prevented media coverage of an event Nov. 18 they indulged in the same sort of ugly censorship so often used by racist Southerners in the 1960’s and …

Don Robinson: Love, justice — and terrorism

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

ASHFIELD — The terrorist attack on Paris has posed more than a test of our strategy for fighting Islamic extremism. It has ignited a struggle for the soul of our nation. The United States will not declare war on ISIS while Barack Obama is president. He correctly reads the settled will of the American people on that point. We will, however, join our …

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my daughter just graduated from smith vocational and she has cmt disease in her hands and legs and has ADD learning disability...(full comment)

Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School changes graduation requirements

Hi Lynne -- How did I miss this the first time around? (Thsi time via Chris.) My very bad -- would Miley...(full comment)

Lynne Bertrand: What spring can reveal if we remember to look, listen

Kathleen McGovern: It isn’t alarmist to fear boxes in Northampton labeled ‘danger’

Sunday, November 22, 2015

To the editor: In the aftermath of the tragedies in Paris, I am moved to re-visit the night of Nov. 5, when Northampton center was shut down for two hours. People noticed five boxes in various locations in town, that had, according to the State Police, the words, …

Editorial: Heroic creativity offers glimpse inside life of ‘outsider’ artist, Genevieve Mae Burnett

Sunday, November 22, 2015

It was never easy being Genevieve Mae Burnett. She was 6 when her family took her to a psychologist to figure out why she heard things others didn’t. A few years later, this child’s struggle received a label: …

Editorial: State’s standardized testing shifts, but will retain prized autonomy

Friday, November 20, 2015

After two years of debate, the state’s top education board this week weighed in on the future of standardized testing in Massachusetts. For the most part, they checked the right box. The decision, while not ideal, will most likely improve an 18-year-old MCAS test that most acknowledge has …

Kaitlin LaFlamme: Support of NASA is critical for us here on Earth

Friday, November 20, 2015

To the editor: The United States needs to continue to support NASA. This will help expand exploration, keep up with competition, and lead to a better life here on Earth. For many, fulfilling their dreams is possible within their own home town. For others, their desires lead them …

Editor note on Gazette’s handling of sit-in coverage

Friday, November 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — A media advisory Tuesday night said a sit-in the next day at Smith College would “call attention to issues of racism on our campus and other campuses around the country ….” It also said organizers “would …

John A. Provost & others: Northampton moves to curtail drinking, rowdy adult behavior at football games

Friday, November 20, 2015

To the editor: We believe wholeheartedly that interscholastic athletics play an important role in helping student-athletes to develop leadership skills and physical fitness, so we were disappointed this season by spectators on “the hill” at Northampton High School whose behavior undermined our character-building efforts. “The hill” refers to the terraced …

Rosie Haynes: On the Smith College sit-in: Only free speech opens minds

Friday, November 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Last Wednesday, I joined over 200 students, faculty and members of the community gathered in the Smith College campus center in the sit-in organized in solidarity with the victims of racism at the University of Missouri. I, a Northampton High School senior, came not only as …

Jim Foudy: Half a loaf on needs public records law reform in Massachusetts

Friday, November 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Massachusetts took a couple steps forward this week toward reform of the state’s Public Records Law, considered one of the weakest in the country. They were better than baby steps, but not the giant ones many advocates wanted. The law is a vital tool for transparency …

Jonathan Wright: How about a ‘co-PILOT’ program instead?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — I have mixed feelings and misgivings about the PILOT program as proposed for Northampton. There is every danger that as this in instituted Smith College and others may reduce their other commitments, which are crucial to community connection and to the nonprofit sector. It appears this …

Nat Reade: How Smith College can be a better ‘good neighbor’

Thursday, November 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — When I read Smith College President Kathleen McCartney’s essay in the Gazette Nov. 6, I was encouraged by one line: “We pride ourselves on being good neighbors.” In many ways, this is already the case. Smith’s presence in Northampton allows us to walk through beautiful gardens, …