Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
Hi 79° | Lo 52°


Editorial: Finding the right punishment for the driver who killed Edward and Brittany McGrath

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Edward and Brittany McGrath died together 10 months ago while riding a motorcycle. Services for them were held soon after, celebrating their lives and accomplishments. But on Tuesday, heart-wrenching stories about them were in the air again, this time in a Northampton courtroom. Grief over their deaths, due to another man’s apparent decision to drive in a heroin stupor — a criminal act — remains bottomless. That driver, James W. …

Editorial: Russell P. Sienkiewicz was right chief for the time in Northampton

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

When former Northampton Mayor Mary L. Ford tapped a low-profile 38-year-old lieutenant in the detective bureau to be police chief in 1994, she surprised many by passing over two higher-ranking and better-known members of the department. “He will have the confidence of the whole force,” she said Feb. 21, 1994, in announcing her choice of city native Russell P. Sienkiewicz to replace the …

Editorial: Serving local audience is vital part of WMUA’s mission

Monday, June 29, 2015

Two weeks before WMUA went on the air, President Harry S. Truman upset his Republican challenger to hold on to the White House. A world war had just ended and a cold one lay ahead. Babies were booming. Elbowing its way in on Nov. 21, 1948: an upstart medium, television. In its 65 …

Editorial: US steps up to address decline in honeybee numbers

Friday, May 22, 2015

Our Pioneer Valley, a region dotted with farms, orchards and fields, makes an idyllic vision, one that conjures up “the land of milk and honey,” words from the Old Testament. Those words can be taken literally since the …

Editorial: Historic Northampton dig offers look at living history

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Today, toss household trash out your back door and the health board might visit. At 58 Bridge St. in Northampton, authorities are on the lookout for a serial litterer. It’s a bit of a cold case — and …

Editorial: Calculating what nonprofits bring to life in Northampton

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

It is a fair but difficult question: To what degree should nonprofits in Northampton be asked to pay for city services? It is fair because they benefit from things like police and fire protection and more generally from calling a vibrant city their home. It is difficult because, …

Editorial: Removal of old rail ties first step in cleanup

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Load by load, old railroad ties that pose a fire hazard are being hauled away in Northampton and Holyoke, days after a Northampton lawmaker called for the state Department of Transportation to act. Now that it has acknowledged …

Editorial: State should join movement to protect pregnant workers

Monday, May 18, 2015

One by one, states across the country are doing the right thing by codifying into law protections for pregnant woman and new mothers in the workforce. It’s time for Massachusetts to join the fray. A movement is afoot to compel employers to make reasonable — in most cases, …

Editorial : Putting human face on ravages of drug addiction

Sunday, May 17, 2015

The parents of a Granby teen recently showed the courage it will take for society to come to grips with the public health threat presented by drug addiction. Richard Hooper faced a nightmare April 24 when he found his son on a computer looking up prescription pills he’d …

Editorial: Time to find a future for a landmark Northampton Catholic church

Friday, May 15, 2015

Wheels turn slowly at the Vatican, but decisions do come. And this month, five years after Northampton parishioners filed an appeal in Latin to save St. Mary of the Assumption Church, they lost. The Apostolic Signatura ruled the Springfield Diocese followed church law when it closed both the …

Editorial: Between the lines on a case involving False Claims Act

Friday, May 15, 2015

No, no — and no. Evan S. Dobelle, who played loose with money that belonged to Westfield State University and to Massachusetts taxpayers, sent a recent message through one of his lawyers that contains at least three questionable assertions. We’ll take them one by one. Dobelle, the former …

Editorial: Railroad must be pushed to remove dangerous debris immediately

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

To David Celino, the state’s chief fire warden, piles of thousands of used railroad ties are in effect “heavy fuels. … All it takes is one spark to get a fire going.” So why, months after rail improvements were completed along Pan Am Railways lines in the Valley, …

Editorial: A quarterback’s legacy tarnished by poor judgment

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

The Patriots and Tom Brady didn’t leave NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell much choice. By failing to fully cooperate with the league’s independent investigation into whether the team improperly deflated footballs before a January game, the Patriots dared the league’s leaders to make an example of them. And so …