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Jeff Schrenzel: Social work is much more than ‘doing good’

Monday, November 23, 2015

To the editor: I am writing about the Gazette’s Nov. 10 article, “Life As A Do-Gooder,” about social worker Jay Pasternack. While I commend Pasternack on his long career doing social work, it should be noted your title is a bit misleading. Social work is more than “doing good.” There is specific knowledge, values and skills needed to do this work, which is a bit more complex than “doing good.” …

Chet Cramer: Preserve prime agricultural land for farming, not commercial use

Monday, November 23, 2015

To the editor: I often travel Meadow Street in North Amherst. Recently I have been very bothered by signs on parcels of land on the east side of the street, between Route 116 and the Waskiewicz family’s J & J Farms, offering the land for sale for commercial or industrial use. I assume it is zoned for such use. This is prime agricultural …

Sidney Moss: Reasons aplenty to vote Sanders for president

Monday, November 23, 2015

To the editor: In response to a recent letter-writer who believes Bernie Sanders’ view of government is in line with the Founding Fathers, I appreciate his readiness to vote for Sanders. I admire Sanders because of his long-earned history as a fighter for social justice and fairness in government policies, for ways to expand Social Security, condemning income inequality, offering free college tuition, …

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my daughter just graduated from smith vocational and she has cmt disease in her hands and legs and has ADD learning disability...(full comment)

Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School changes graduation requirements

Hi Lynne -- How did I miss this the first time around? (Thsi time via Chris.) My very bad -- would Miley...(full comment)

Lynne Bertrand: What spring can reveal if we remember to look, listen

Thomas O’Brien: Congress needs to act on public transportation funding

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

To the editor: Our nation has a backlog of at least $86 billion in needed bus and rail maintenance. Nationwide, there are more than 60 public transit projects on hold due to lack of consistent funding. And 45 percent of Americans have no public transit. This should be …

Isabel Polak: Sixth-grader: Give students time to prepare for school change

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

To the editor: I read the story “Residents must grasp need for Amherst school revamp” in the Gazette on Oct. 30. The people of Amherst are having a disagreement on how the school system is going to be configured. Fort River and Wildwood are old schools, and some …

Rebecca Fricke: Amherst Farmers Market made great strides this season

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

To the editor: As the 2015 market season comes to a close the Amherst Agricultural Commission would like to acknowledge the gains the Amherst Farmers Market has made this year. We thank AFM Manager Tammy Ryan and the Amherst Farmers Market Committee for welcoming new Amherst farmers to …

John Montanari: Inaccuracy, political bias among reasons public distrusts media

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

To the editor: Thanks to the Gazette for its editorial in robust defense of the rights of journalists. That such a defense needed to be written is troubling, but good for the Gazette for doing so. When the subject turned to the public’s increased distrust in the media, …

Felicia Sevene: Great article on social worker, but headline too snarky

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

To the editor: It was a pleasure to discover in the paper on Nov. 10 the lengthy and thoughtfully written article spotlighting Jay Pasternack, a local social worker recently retired from ServiceNet. The article beautifully described Jay’s long connection to social work, beginning with his personal experience of …

Alex Kent: New manager in Amherst should be a woman or person of color

Monday, November 16, 2015

To the editor: Now that Amherst’s Interim Town Manager David Ziomek has taken himself out of the running for the regular job, I believe it is time for Amherst to demonstrate leadership in appointing a town manager who embodies the inclusive values so many of us in this …

J. Brooks Ballenger: United States needs to reject the Trans-Pacific Partnership

Monday, November 16, 2015

To the editor: The Trans-Pacific Partnership may seem far away and unimportant but it will hit pretty close to home when Massachusetts gets sued by a corporation for raising the minimum wage or requiring food safety labeling. Or when people are unable to afford life-saving medicines because of …

Amalia FourHawks: Student letters to veterans medicine to many hearts

Monday, November 16, 2015

To the editor: One of the nice events of Veterans Day is the generous offers by some restaurants for a free meal for all vets. We went to Applebee’s in Hadley last night. There was a nice feeling in the air as vets greeted each other, identified by …

Marylou Theilman: Backers of charter study in Amherst should recall 2003

Monday, November 16, 2015

To the editor: Although it is not known what a new Charter Commission would propose for Amherst, in 2003 an Amherst Charter Commission proposed replacing representative Town Meeting with a nine-member elected Town Council, and replacing the Select Board with an elected mayor. The mayor would be the …

Jim Oldham: Coverage unclear on Amherst Town Meeting financial decision

Friday, November 13, 2015

To the editor: The Nov. 6 article headlined “Amherst TM defeats building fund” was confusing if not misleading. Town Meeting’s vote to put $650,702 into the existing stabilization fund was a vote in favor of saving for future needs. The vote followed Amherst’s existing financial management policies and …