Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Columns

Jason Johnson:

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

HADLEY — Lake Warner is approximately a quarter mile from the Connecticut River in Hadley. It is a 68-acre, freshwater lake and wetland ecosystem undergoing “eutrophication.” Eutrophication describes intensifying enrichment of an aquatic ecosystem with chemical nutrients, typically containing nitrogen or phosphorus or both. It is measured using several diagnostic tools such as transparency, dissolved oxygen and the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus present. Freshwater wetlands are often described as the “kidneys of the planet.” They filter impurities and toxins that make our rivers and lakes cleaner. Wetlands provide habitat for a multitude of plants, insects, birds, fish, amphibians, reptiles and mammals. Wetlands are systems where the process known as primary production transfers solar and …

Lily Wallace: Radio station WMUA should recommit itself to benefiting students

Monday, July 27, 2015

AMHERST — Tensions between the students who run WMUA, the student radio station of the University of Massachusetts, and members of both the non-student volunteer DJ and listener community exploded in April when student leadership voted to dismiss longtime host Max Shea for violating the station’s anti-harassment and discrimination policies. Since then, elected …

Marty Nathan, MD: Given climate change, the band cannot just play on.

Monday, July 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Every summer I have the inestimable privilege of spending a week or so on an island in the Bay of Fundy, watching tides rise and fall 25 feet twice a day. I avoid the news, telling friends that I am “cleansing my soul” of the responsibilities and tragedies of life in the fast-paced, complicated United States. I couldn’t escape it this …

Mary L. Ford: The modern-day health miracle known as Medicare

Friday, July 24, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — I’m fed up with citizens complaining that government is a problem, not a solution. I want my children and nieces and nephews to know that because of Medicare, my generation as we grow old does not have to turn to them to cover hospital bills and …

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 …

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 …

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 …

Jim Foudy: Grow Food Northampton plants seeds of inclusion

Friday, July 17, 2015

FLORENCE — Build it and they will come. Well, they will if they know about it and feel welcome. That was the challenge Grow Food Northampton faced after opening its organic community garden plots. Organizers looked around and saw mostly white, native English-speakers working the soil. Information sheets …

Maria Geryk: The Amherst regional school consolidation question

Friday, July 17, 2015

Over the past several years, the Amherst-Pelham Regional School District has been operating with state funding that has been stagnant at best, and declining at worst. In addition, enrollments have been declining steadily over the past several years, a trend which is seen across the state and is …

Adam Fisher: A big political idea from the Big Sky country

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — With 481 days to go before the presidential election and roughly 30 declared and possible candidates in the running, my internal Gallup Poll has already chosen a favorite. If the election were held today, I would vote for Montana. It’s not as if I know a …

Reader comments: On that rebel flag in Williamsburg

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following reader comments address the decision of a Williamsburg company, CRD Metalworks, to display a replica of the Confederate flag on its building and to fly the banner on a flagpole in response to calls to remove the flag from the South Carolina statehouse. Sending …

A teacher’s voice

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Think for a moment about what motivates you to be fully engaged when completing a task or learning something new. Go ahead. I’ll wait. Now think about a task that you do not find engaging, or that causes …