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Atty Bill Newman in his Northampton office

Bill Newman: Whose free speech display of Black Lives Matter banner on City Hall?

Friday, February 5, 2016

Shortly after the Black Lives Matter banner was raised at Northampton City Hall on the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the president of a city police union, denying any connection, requested that Mayor David Narkewicz fly a banner recognizing National Peace Officers Memorial Day in May. Other banner and flag-flying requests no doubt will follow. We’ve been down this …

Lissa Pierce Bonifaz: Standardized tests got you down? Consider opting out

Thursday, February 4, 2016

The Amherst Regional school system was recently notified that its students would take two high-stakes, standardized tests this spring. The Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) for third to sixth grade will be augmented with items from another standardized test, the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC). The state …

Bess Hepner: Celebrated at Smith, but for contributing what to the world?

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Smith College students hear about Rally Day their first year. It’s when alumnae are honored and set an example for the graduating class. As a senior at Smith, this is a day I have been looking forward to. I am excited like many of my classmates to wear my gown for the first time. Even more, I am excited to leave campus at …

Jim Palermo: Into the standardized test looking glass

Friday, January 8, 2016

It took 18 months of sustained effort, and a hearing in Hampshire Superior Court, to compel the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to release what turned out to be a one-page typewritten list of the of 49 Massachusetts schools and the 47 school districts that participated …

John Paradis: Lack of state commitment to serve veterans brought leadership change at Holyoke Soldiers’ Home

Thursday, January 7, 2016

When Paul Barabani, a retired colonel from the Massachusetts Army National Guard, became superintendent of the Soldiers’ Home in Holyoke in 2011, he had a vision: Transform the Soldiers’ Home from the “old” Soldiers’ Home, an aged facility …

Rabbi Justin David replies to Viewpoints essay by Vijay Prashad, then the two exchange responses

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

EDITOR’S NOTE: In this commentary, Rabbi Justin David replies to a Viewpoints essay by Vijay Prashad. Then the two men exchange responses on the issues raised. Rabbi Justin David NORTHAMPTON — Vijay Prashad’s essay in the Gazette’s Viewpoints section Wednesday contains many sad and tragic truths about lives …

Larry Ely: Fighting cynicism on our ability to respond to climate change

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

One sometimes sees a person in Amherst wearing a T-shirt reading “London, Paris, Rome, Amherst,” which insouciantly and proudly declares Amherst to be as vibrant a center of culture as the world’s great cities. You smile, thinking this comparison is a stretch, while acknowledging Amherst’s quixotic pride of …

Robert Abel: Another man lifts veil on fight against prostate cancer

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

I want to thank Jonathan Kahane for his nicely researched and honest article in the Gazette Dec. 14 on prostate cancer. He deftly outlined the process which a man goes through when faced with a diagnosis of that particular scourge. I would just like to add a note …

Christopher K. Powell: Kinder Morgan pipeline project not end to nature as we know it

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

WORTHINGTON After reading the guest column, “Why I am ‘intervenor’ on pipeline” by Kathryn R. Eiseman, (Gazette, Dec. 29), requesting people to oppose the Kinder Morgan Northeast Energy Direct Pipeline by contacting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, I felt another voice should be heard to add a little …

The endless occupation For Palestinian children, a world of fear, humiliation, frustration and mistrust

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Daily news comes of the death of a Palestinian teenager at the hands of the Israeli security services. The list lengthens — Abdullah Nasasra (15), Mustafa Fanoun (15), Lama al-Bakri (16), Ibrahim Dawoud (16), Ayman Abassi (17), Samah …

Joe Gannon & Valentina Gannon: Keep Hamilton, boot Jackson from $20 bill

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

In our new year of 2016 a decision will be made: which woman from American history will be chosen to adorn the new $10 bill. We would like to plead: None! The time is far overdue for a …

Jay Fleitman: Why I am wary about the news media

Monday, January 4, 2016

I had a conversation this week with someone who lives at the opposite end of the political spectrum from me and he was fuming over the political coverage by his news outlet of choice, MSNBC. He is an enthusiastic supporter of Bernie Sanders for president, and he was …

Karl Meyer: All pumped up about a river ‘asset’ that’s on the market

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Ever dreamed of owning your own bank? I got a deal for you! Northfield Mountain Pumped Storage Project is for sale again, along with the Turners Falls canal and dam — and a string of assets down in …