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Columns

Maria José Botelho: Textbooks, even cheaper ones, are not the answer

Friday, January 23, 2015

AMHERST — I appreciate that the Gazette editors (“UMass can do more to reduce book costs,” Jan. 20) took notice of the University of Massachusetts Amherst’s recent contract with the online vendor Amazon. As a professor at the University, I can comment on how I have experienced textbook use and purchase in my courses. Many students have been shopping online …

Katherine S. Newman & Jay Schafer: UMass taking serious steps to reduce textbook costs for students

Friday, January 23, 2015

AMHERST — We write in response to the Gazette’s editorial Jan. 20 entitled “UMass can do more to reduce book costs.” We think it is important for readers to know that the university has invested significant resources to address the issue of textbook costs and have made enormous progress. Indeed, we think the editorial might have been more accurate if entitled, “UMass does …

Clare Higgins: Keeping it real about Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

Friday, January 23, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — We celebrated Dr. Martin Luther King’s birthday Monday. King, the non-violent revolutionary, now has a federal holiday. Speaker Boehner tweets, “Together, may we have the wisdom to follow Rev. King’s example & heed his call to service.” Sen. Rubio proclaims (via tweet) that “On this #MLKDay let us remember to continue to strive for the Dream of equal opportunity for all.” …

Dr. David Gottsegen: Choices in primary care widen gateway to addiction

Thursday, January 22, 2015

By DR. DAVID GOTTSEGEN SOUTH HADLEY — The best way to address health problems is through primary prevention. Preventing the flu through hand washing and vaccines is preferable to treating people already sickened by the disease. It is better to prevent injuries from motor vehicle accidents by using …

Don Robinson: It’s time to revisit America’s experiment with democracy

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

ASHFIELD — On Thanksgiving Day, my column was devoted to the proposition that America’s constitutional system needs fundamental reform. Anyone arguing for reform faces two tasks: first, to show that present arrangements are not working (there is little dispute about that); and second, to offer an alternative that …

Adam Fisher: Reflections on my mother’s life

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — I suppose that since she was graduated from Smith College here in Northampton and because she married one of her Smith College professors, there is some local relevance to the death of my mother, Helen White …

Dr. Ira Helfand: ‘Doomsday’ clock hands will move Thursday, likely signaling a more dangerous world

Monday, January 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — This Thursday, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists will update its famous Doomsday Clock. Since 1947 the Bulletin has used the clock to illustrate the severity of the threat of nuclear war. During the worst years of the Cold War in the early 1980s, the clock …

Sara Weinberger: A visit with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — On a recent visit to Washington, D.C., I sought respite from frigid temperatures by ducking into the expansive array of art, history, nature and science offered by D.C.’s mostly free museums. Although I failed to find aesthetic value in many of the contemporary canvases that lined …

Jim Foudy: Promising rail future will be sidelined unless Congress gets moving

Friday, January 16, 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: Jim Foudy, a former editor and publisher of the Gazette, begins a monthly column today. NORTHAMPTON — The return of the Vermonter to the Connecticut River line after more than a quarter century brings the dream …

Jean Esther: Our era’s paramount call: end racism in American life

Friday, January 16, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — The Gazette recently published guest columns by Andrew Trushaw (Dec. 31) and Joshua Wallace (Jan. 5). I couldn’t agree more with Wallace that as residents and business owners in Northampton, we deserve clear-minded, fair leadership from our elected officials and public servants such as the police. …

Marty Nathan: Why must shifts to avoid climate change be ‘palatable’ when so much is at stake?

Thursday, January 15, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Caught out of the corner of my ear while sweeping the kitchen floor: “The program for change to prevent climate disaster needs to be inexpensive and palatable enough to be acceptable.” Thus stated a fundamentalist Christian environmentalist to a National Public Radio reporter regarding her work …

Steve Strimer: Another route to business success: cooperative ownership

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

FLORENCE — The imminent closing of Faces and Iris Photo, two great Northampton institutions, prompted a well-crafted editorial in Monday’s Gazette. Among the many good questions posed by the writer, another was left unasked: What are the workers at these stores thinking? The owners say the downside of …

Todd Thompson et al.: How board shaped advice on stipends, health coverage for part-time elected officials in Northampton

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following guest column was written by Todd Thompson and fellow members of the Elected Official Compensation Advisory Board. NORTHAMPTON — We would like to help everyone understand the thinking behind the report we recently submitted to the City Council. In a guest column last Wednesday, …