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Sara Weinberger.

Sara Weinberger: Really, America? Too afraid to do the right thing?

Friday, November 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — I remember as a child on Yom Kippur watching those in my synagogue beating their chests with clenched fists as they chanted an alphabetized list of transgressions, ranging from gluttony to gossip. When I became too cool to sit next to my parents, my friends and I stood in the back of the sanctuary, mockingly punching each others’ chests, chuckling as we recited this alphabet of evil deeds. What I remember most was the transgression corresponding to the letter “x.” Each year, when we made it down to “x,” we would point to the word that sent us into “preadolescent” giggles — “xenophobia.” Each year we wondered what the meaning of this strange …

Michael Dover: My mother, the refugee — and lessons from her life

Friday, November 27, 2015

LEVERETT — “Frances, do you remember the time we were all lined up against a wall to be shot?” I was in my early 20s and at an afternoon family gathering. As we sat on the patio chatting, my aunt – my mother’s older sister – asked my mother this question. I’d known …

Sean Glennon: Count me deflated by NFL’s apparent war on Tom Brady

Friday, November 27, 2015

FLORENCE — The shift in perspective isn’t something fans of professional football ever need to think about. It’s annual, inevitable, encoded in our body clocks. Just as piles of Thanksgiving leftovers disappear from refrigerators in daring midnight raids. Just as the dying season’s stubborn oak leaves partner with cold wind to spin and …

Clare Higgins: The economic refugees in my past

Friday, November 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — As I have watched the tragic story of the Syrian diaspora unfold over the last few months I have been struck by the parallels to other times in our history and my own history. Almost all …

Don Robinson: Love, justice — and terrorism

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

ASHFIELD — The terrorist attack on Paris has posed more than a test of our strategy for fighting Islamic extremism. It has ignited a struggle for the soul of our nation. The United States will not declare war on ISIS while Barack Obama is president. He correctly reads …

Michael DiPasquale: Taking climate change challenge seriously in Northampton

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — In late September, Northampton began work to create the city’s first comprehensive Climate Adaptation Plan. The kick-off consisted of three days of public meetings and design sessions conducted by a team of six consultants organized by the American Institute of Architects. Climate adaptation refers to measures …

Lilly Gaev: The orphaned block in the heart of Northampton’s downtown

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — The City Council just put the final kibosh on our many efforts to have Center Court in the central business zone downtown accepted as a city street. Many other former private ways have become official city …

Mary Carey: The lost Saturday — my seven hours without memory

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

AMHERST — I lost my short-term memory just before 10 a.m. the Saturday before last and didn’t get it back until 5 p.m. During my lost hours, I asked my husband Brian every two minutes or so where I was and what was happening. Brian would explain that …

Jim McGovern, Monte Belmonte & Andrew Morehouse: What motivates our hunger march

Monday, November 23, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — As families across Massachusetts prepare to gather around the dinner table for Thanksgiving this week, we all take a moment to share our gratitude. But for many families who struggle with hunger, Thanksgiving can be a stressful time. To help all of our community’s families and …

Rosie Haynes: On the Smith College sit-in: Only free speech opens minds

Friday, November 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Last Wednesday, I joined over 200 students, faculty and members of the community gathered in the Smith College campus center in the sit-in organized in solidarity with the victims of racism at the University of Missouri. I, a Northampton High School senior, came not only as …

Jim Foudy: Half a loaf on needs public records law reform in Massachusetts

Friday, November 20, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Massachusetts took a couple steps forward this week toward reform of the state’s Public Records Law, considered one of the weakest in the country. They were better than baby steps, but not the giant ones many advocates wanted. The law is a vital tool for transparency …

Jonathan Wright: How about a ‘co-PILOT’ program instead?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — I have mixed feelings and misgivings about the PILOT program as proposed for Northampton. There is every danger that as this in instituted Smith College and others may reduce their other commitments, which are crucial to community connection and to the nonprofit sector. It appears this …

Nat Reade: How Smith College can be a better ‘good neighbor’

Thursday, November 19, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — When I read Smith College President Kathleen McCartney’s essay in the Gazette Nov. 6, I was encouraged by one line: “We pride ourselves on being good neighbors.” In many ways, this is already the case. Smith’s presence in Northampton allows us to walk through beautiful gardens, …