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Opinion

Sigrid Schmalzer: Pedestrians get short shrift in road safety changes

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

To the editor: I am deeply distressed by the crosswalk accident that has left a beloved University of Massachusetts student, Chloe Rombach, in critical condition. Too many pedestrians and cyclists have been injured or killed locally in recent years. I cross at that crosswalk in Northampton almost every day: like many others, it is treacherous — but with more visible signs it could be far safer. Tellingly, when construction last …

Cynthia Loring MacBain: On the expectation gap in US life

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

To the editor: A few years ago, while doing an Alternatives to Violence workshop in a maximum security prison in New York State, I met Malik. At the time, he was a leader of a prison gang, but he wanted to make something more of his life. He took college-level courses in prison, and finally he was out. At a college conference I …

William Aherin: Government should not meddle in Internet use

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

To the editor: In the “net neutrality” controversy, Americans are being told that we need government control of the Internet to maintain a level playing field. Previous attempts have resulted in the federal courts declaring that the FCC cannot reclassify Internet as President Obama has stated he will do. Many controversies in the world have resulted in countries which control the Internet, to …

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Alden E. Bacon: Williamsburg cemetery board explains removal of flags

Thursday, December 11, 2014

To the editor: After a critical letter appeared in the Daily Hampshire Gazette about the Village Hill Cemetery in Williamsburg, the cemetery association felt a response was in order. This year the cemetery has a new board of directors and a new superintendent. Together, we are trying very …

Burton Novak: The party season is here. Is your excuse ready?

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

HOLYOKE — It began innocuously enough — an artfully designed long and narrow rectangle fluttering gracefully down through the mail slot in our front door. I saw it happening, in slow motion, like a train wreck. It came to rest on the welcome mat and just lay there, …

Editorial: What the CIA did in all of our names

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

The Central Intelligence Agency delivered cruel and usual punishment to people caught up its post-Sept. 11 dragnet, a long-awaited Senate report reveals. In dank holes around the world, people representing the U.S. government brutalized captives out of the …

Ann Burke: Northampton’s downtown, now at a crossroads, needs to pull together

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

SPRINGFIELD — I congratulate the Northampton community for its efforts to pick up the pieces after the unfortunate loss of the Business Improvement District and for looking to develop a sustainable downtown model. Listening to comments at the packed meeting of property owners last week at the Hotel …

Editorial: Toward a day when black lives really do matter in US

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

What’s in a hashtag? When it comes to the current furor over the killing of black men by police officers, the answer is nothing less than the history of racial violence in America and our failure to create …

Mark LaChance: Letter praising Amherst BID salt in the wounds

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

To the editor: I find the timing of a letter (“Thanks Amherst BID for wonderful flower displays,” Dec. 3), and the Gazette’s decision to publish it, highly questionable. At a time when Northampton needs to comes together, this seemed like salt in our wounds. Mark LaChance Florence …

Julie Mencher: Provocative questions raised by Bloom column

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

To the editor: In Prof. Peter Bloom’s provocative guest column (“Mission and admission at Smith: A call to mind over body,” Dec. 3), he argues that since 21st century notions of gender make the very defining of “women” impossible, Smith should alter its purpose from single-sex women’s college …

Emmett Barcalow: State needs to step forward in police shootings

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

To the editor: Not again. Another unarmed black man, Eric Garner, killed by a white police officer and a grand jury in New York won’t even indict. It looks to me that our society has given the police a license to kill black males with impunity. As a …

Alex Kent: Amherst developer should help with parking solution

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

To the editor: In a more perfect world, people would live in downtown areas without cars. They would walk, ride bikes or use public transportation. In that more perfect world, Amherst developer Archipelago Investment’s argument that its Kendrick Place and One East Pleasant rental apartments will be attractive …

Henry Lappen: Mums live on in local art show

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

To the editor: With regard to the picture of mums being tossed on the compost pile, not all of the Smith College Greenhouse Mum Show met that fateful end. A significant portion of the flowers is moving nearby to the APE Gallery on Main Street to become part …