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Columns

Mia Kim Sullivan: What’s behind the attack on Planned Parenthood

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

AMHERST I write to voice my support for the doctors and clinic workers who help people obtain abortions, often at great personal cost. The current call to defund Planned Parenthood has been coordinated with attack videos that are highly edited in order to demonize the doctors who were filmed. As David Cohen and Krysten Connon document in their book, “Living in the Crosshairs,” the personal nature of political attacks on …

Karen List: Artful action: A look at this year’s grants through the Emily List Fund for the Performing Arts

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

AMHERST Romeo and Juliet were once eaten by alligators. Hamlet met a princess though, as anyone familiar with Shakespeare knows, there is no princess in the play. And the actors cannot for the life of them dance. Such is the way it goes when the Very Serious players from Messenger Theatre Co. take …

Jim Palermo: Pope’s message on environment showcases an engaged moralism

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

SOUTHAMPTON Reactions to Pope Francis’ recent encyclical (“Laudato Si”) expose the absurdity of the idea that there is a separation of religion and state. Such a separation is now, and always has been, illusionary. Prior to the issuance of the encyclical, Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, said, “I don’t want to …

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 …

John Sheirer: Where slaves left their imprint, vital lessons for today

Monday, July 13, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — My wife and I recently visited South Carolina and walked directly by Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. To be honest, I didn’t notice this particular church. Charleston is rich in historic buildings and beautiful landmarks. Another nearby church made a bigger impression because dozens of children …