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Opinion

Thomas Weiner: Defend Planned Parenthood from baseless accusations

Thursday, July 30, 2015

To the editor: It is essential that women have access to the services of Planned Parenthood. Trying to dismantle this organization is a way to deny women basic rights. It must not be allowed to happen through trickery and deceit. Thomas Weiner Northampton …

Debra Orgera: It took many voices to end ill-advised Olympic bid

Thursday, July 30, 2015

To the editor: The Boston 2024 Olympic bid is dead. At this time there are many people across the state to thank for protecting our taxpayers’ dollars. Northampton’s own Andrew Zimbalist and No Boston Olympics led the charge for no Olympics. The statewide nonpartisan Citizens for a Say Committee was working to make sure that all Massachusetts residents were going to get the …

Jane Noelle Aulisio: Let’s have more respect about differing views on flags

Thursday, July 30, 2015

To the editor: In a recent letter, a Westfield resident tells a woman from Easthampton that she should have no say in where and when Easthampton displays American flags — and that her having a say is disrespectful. But he evidently thinks he should have a say. Why is that? Because he’s a man? Because he’s a veteran? He doesn’t even live here. …

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Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School changes graduation requirements

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

Eva Hudlicka: A plea to CSO management: Build consensus with staff

Friday, July 24, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — There is a better way! For three days this week, clinicians from Clinical & Support Options (CSO) went on strike to demand living wages and reasonable working conditions. CSO is a regional, nonprofit community mental health agency, providing outpatient and crisis services. The decision to strike …

Pete and Lene Mc Lean: Worthington bridge problem must be addressed now

Friday, July 24, 2015

WORTHINGTON — The closure of the bridge on Sam Hill Road here in the town of Worthington must be addressed. This past winter, and the mud season that followed, were among the worst that many residents of this community have ever experienced, mainly due to the closing of …

Editorial: Ed Porter closes nearly four decades of helping disabled in western Massachusetts

Thursday, July 23, 2015

In stepping down as executive director of what is now known as the United Arc after almost 40 years, Ed Porter leaves some very big boots to fill. It is understandably hard to replace somebody who has been on the job for roughly four decades. In Porter’s case, …

Lissa Pierce Bonifaz: A pox on both of your standardized tests

Thursday, July 23, 2015

AMHERST — When it comes to the question of standardized testing in our schools, we should listen to the educators. At a recent forum in Springfield, the Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education presented only two options: MCAS or PARC. The special education teachers who spoke at …

Don Robinson: ‘Amazing Grace’ in Charleston

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

ASHFIELD — “We the people … in order to form a more perfect union … do ordain and establish this Constitution.” For the American constitutional project to succeed, we need a national culture that shares fundamental values. On the Fourth of July weekend the Gazette published an article …

Editorial: Ending the summer drought in children’s nutrition

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Through the school year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture sends resources into every county in the country to help poor children get enough to eat. Its National School Lunch Program last year enrolled 21.5 million young people for free or reduced-price meals. But every summer, the school cafeterias …

Norman Spencer: Many layers to issue of driver-bicyclist courtesy

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

To the editor: I offer an alternative perspective to the inherent conclusions in a reader’s July 17 letter about the bicyclist whose request for room for a lane change was ignored by a driver. I have been bicycling and have been a driver on this area’s streets for …

Lorna Ritz: Why has Amherst let Mt. Pollux go to seed?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

AMHERST — Neighbors, students, community members and tourists regularly used to visit Mt. Pollux Conservation Area in South Amherst more often than not for its beauty and solitude, but now have remorse for what once had been the “jewel of the town.” Mt. Pollux has steadily gone wild; …

Nathan P. Somers, MD: How we are guided by sadness

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — When life’s challenges and letdowns are thrown their way, children may experience sadness. Maybe they lost an important sports game, got a bad grade, lost something or someone special, or had their feelings hurt. Sadness is an emotion that’s uncomfortable for any adult, especially parents, to …

Editorial: Rosenberg trial document release sheds light on grim chapter in US legal history

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

A long-awaited document related to the trial of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg is now public. And while the jigsaw puzzle of the couple’s guilt or innocence isn’t fully together, there is more reason than ever to question whether both husband and wife engaged in conspiracy to commit espionage, …