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Amy Wasserman: Despite programs, some local students not getting enough to eat

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

PELHAM — One recent morning as I was writing a check out to the middle school for a coming field trip, it occurred to me that the Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School is paying for radio advertising and building a huge addition to accommodate more grades. How is it that one public school in our community has extra funds and others need to charge families for enrichment activities? Later …

Clare Higgins: Obamacare’s Republican roots

Friday, June 26, 2015

NORTHAMPTON— The Supreme Court has spoken – and Obamacare lives! Chief Justice Roberts, no friend of the president, wrote the majority opinion that allows the Affordable Care Act to stand. There has been the hope for repeal on the right, and a single-payer system on the left, but it’s Obamacare for the win. Elements of the Affordable Care Act are derived from two …

Adam Fisher: The idea of racial reconciliation in America

Thursday, June 25, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Here’s another column about racism you do not need to read. In the emotional tsunami that rose up after June 17 fatal shooting of nine black members of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina, a friend of mine sent me a proposal. The Rev. Emmett Coyne, a …

Don Robinson: The person we are looking for as president

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

ASHFIELD — Campaign 2016 is still in its early stages. People like Donald Trump and Lincoln Chaffee are throwing their hats into the ring. Pundits are assessing the chances of candidates like Rick Santorum and Martin O’Malley. Before the winnowing gets serious, we need to ask ourselves fundamental …

Bill Eacho: Capitalism can stop climate change

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Pope Francis has made it clear that all of us have a responsibility to be good stewards of this planet, and as such must address the challenge of climate change. Many frame this issue as capitalism vs. Christianity, as economic prosperity vs. morality. But it doesn’t have to …

David J. Narkewicz: Tax credit can do more to help state’s working families

Saturday, June 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Gov. Charlie Baker and the Massachusetts Senate have put forth two separate proposals to increase the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for working families in our state. This is an important step to address income inequality …

Jim Foudy: A pioneer of liberty: David Ruggles of Florence

Friday, June 19, 2015

FLORENCE — A small center for the display of early Florence history opens today on Nonotuck Street. It is a new focal point for the rich story of the village, and for the impact that strongly held values and beliefs can have on society. The David Ruggles Center …

Joe Blumenthal: The ‘war on drugs’ that cannot be won

Friday, June 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — The Gazette’s editorial page Tuesday was devoted to the subject of society’s response to drug use and abuse. The editorial praised an exhibition at Forbes Library by a group of Northampton High School students and an anticipated emphasis by our new governor on treatment for drug …

Carroll: Reflecting on my father’s watch

Friday, June 19, 2015

When I was in my 20s, my father gave me his retirement watch, a Hamilton, with a warm and elegant face. It was an early electric model, and made symbolic sense since he retired from the power and light company. Before the electric company, he worked for a …

Lois Ahrens: Wanted: More justice in criminal justice system

Thursday, June 18, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — On June 11, Vivian Poreda must have believed she was out of options to pay her mortgage when she attempted to hold up the Freedom Credit Union with a cap gun. She knew her family was at risk of losing their home. She was charged with …

Zac Bears: The right road to a ‘great’ UMass Amherst

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

AMHERST — It was almost impossible to escape the call for Massachusetts to “be great” during the campaign of now-Gov. Charlie Baker last fall. And Baker’s campaign slogan has followed him right through a rough winter and the …

Adam Fisher: The ties that really do bind

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — On Saturday, as I was weeding around a decorative rock that sits on what passes for a front yard here, I heard a woman’s voice behind me saying, “Good morning.” It was a tentative, polite voice …

What happened to the pot stigma?

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Twenty years ago, drug dealers were seen for what they were ­— criminal and dangerous elements in our society. They were shunned by the mainstream. People who sold marijuana were considered losers, in the business of harming our children. Parents warned their kids to stay away from those …