Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Columns

Kristin DeBoer: Safeguarding Valley lands that sustain us all

Monday, March 30, 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: This monthly column is produced by the Pioneer Valley Relocalization Project (http://pvrp.weebly.com/). Today, Kristin DeBoer of the Kestrel Land Trust writes about conservation. AMHERST — Food, water and shelter are essential to life. We know this instinctively. Yet, too often, forests, farms and waterways that provide for these basic needs are taken for granted, perhaps because land conservation is mistaken as a luxury rather than a necessity. Catching a beautiful view of the mountains or skiing across a vast field is ample inspiration for many people to support conservation. However, scenic viewsheds and outdoor recreation alone are not strong enough reasons to maintain widespread, multi-generational support. How can protecting land help solve other …

David Sullivan: Men must answer the call to help prevent violence against women

Monday, March 30, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — The eighth-annual Massachusetts White Ribbon Day, held throughout our state earlier this month, is about ending domestic and sexual violence in our communities and making sure that men and boys understand they can be part of the solution. In the weeks and months that follow, our personal, professional and public efforts will influence the social norms for our culture among men …

Clare Higgins: An investment we’ll never regret: better education for 4-year-olds

Friday, March 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — I read something in the paper almost every week about pre-kindergarten as the key to school success. States like Oklahoma, Georgia and Virginia are offering free admission to pre-kindergarten to 4-year-olds. New York City started its program for 4-year-olds last September. Some of these programs are full day and some are half day. Some are full year and some follow the …

Cutting through static: A Hadley homeowner kicks tires on this year’s hefty electricity price hikes (COMMENTARY)

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

HADLEY — I’m pretty ticked off about my latest residential electric bill — partly because of what I owe, but mostly because of the actions of the Boston commissioners who are appointed by the governor of Massachusetts and …

Steve Herrell: Reset needed on later high school start time in Northampton

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — Half of Northampton High School students fall asleep in class. No matter what the course, whether it be calculus or music theory, students don’t learn if they are asleep. In a well-done 2009 survey, under the auspices of the administration, 53 percent of students reported that …

Jay Fleitman: A man, a shovel and a mound of snow that won’t go away

Monday, March 2, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — ISIS is rampaging through the Middle East. The mullahs of Iran are working towards nuclear weapons. Putin is taking territory from the Ukraine. Obamacare is turning our health care system inside out. In this column I want to consider something else important: municipal snow plowing. I …

Dennis R. Scribner: Webcams will help advance police work in Easthampton

Sunday, March 1, 2015

EASTHAMPTON — An Easthampton resident recently expressed concern over the Easthampton police department’s acquisition of two webcams donated by a local business owner. As an Easthampton detective, I would like to respond. First, the Easthampton Police Department is …

Katherine Appy: Tyranny of loudest voices hobbles public debate in Amherst

Sunday, March 1, 2015

AMHERST — In recent months, more than 50 people have spoken to me or others about running for a seat on the Amherst School Committee. In the end, only two were willing to run. Two of the four people who drew papers have dropped out. Now that I …

Clare Higgins: Tough winter of 2015 issues call for community-mindedness

Friday, February 27, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — It’s been a hard winter. Snow, cold, missed work, closed schools, exhausted snow and ice budgets (and exhausted plow drivers) ... the list goes on and on. While this has been hard on all of us, it has been an especially cruel winter for our friends …

Ed Gregory: A very special, and sluggish, delivery

Thursday, February 26, 2015

NORTHAMPTON — You’ve heard the phrase “snail mail.” Well, believe it! I recently purchased a relatively expensive book online from Northampton and arranged for delivery to my home in Greenfield. Big deal, right? You bet it is! I offer the following authentic tracking data of the item from …

Michael Goldman: A cross-country ski destination of the heart

Thursday, February 26, 2015

FLORENCE — I can understand the practicality of cross-country skiing. I mean, if the neighboring village were running low on a crucial medicine, or if the tribe were running out of meat and the nearest caribou herd were five miles away, I would be the first to don …

Don Robinson: Two new books tease out what freedom felt like for the enslaved

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

ASHFIELD — Black History Month is a good time to celebrate the achievements of two local scholars, authors of books that make major contributions to our understanding of what it has meant to be black in America. Barbara …

Jim Palermo: I’m still waiting for promised public records on use of standardized tests

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

SOUTHAMPTON — In 1927, a standardized test, Stanford-Binet, identified people who could be forcibly sterilized in the United States, under a program of eugenics approved by the United States Supreme Court in Buck v. Bell. No less than the highly regarded Chief Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes declared that …