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Letters

Sigrid Schmalzer: Pedestrians get short shrift in road safety changes

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

To the editor: I am deeply distressed by the crosswalk accident that has left a beloved University of Massachusetts student, Chloe Rombach, in critical condition. Too many pedestrians and cyclists have been injured or killed locally in recent years. I cross at that crosswalk in Northampton almost every day: like many others, it is treacherous — but with more visible signs it could be far safer. Tellingly, when construction last …

Cynthia Loring MacBain: On the expectation gap in US life

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

To the editor: A few years ago, while doing an Alternatives to Violence workshop in a maximum security prison in New York State, I met Malik. At the time, he was a leader of a prison gang, but he wanted to make something more of his life. He took college-level courses in prison, and finally he was out. At a college conference I …

William Aherin: Government should not meddle in Internet use

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

To the editor: In the “net neutrality” controversy, Americans are being told that we need government control of the Internet to maintain a level playing field. Previous attempts have resulted in the federal courts declaring that the FCC cannot reclassify Internet as President Obama has stated he will do. Many controversies in the world have resulted in countries which control the Internet, to …

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Mary Cay Andrikidis: Thanks Look Park personnel for holiday

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

To the editor: I just came back from probably my last bike ride of the season through Look Park. What a wonderful surprise to see the Christmas manger scene lit up with Jesus, Mary and Joseph, the Menorah and other charming secular scenes of the coming meaningful season …

George Levinger: Thanks Amherst BID for wonderful flower displays

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

To the editor: Business Improvement Districts sometimes attract public criticism, as has happened in Northampton. But in Amherst, I’m pleased to say, we can be more supportive. After another season of beautiful flower displays all over downtown Amherst, I want to give thanks to our own BID, which …

Kevin Cooke: Setting the facts straight on fracking

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

To the editor: In response to a recent letter to the editor expressing concerns about hydraulic fracturing to stimulate natural gas production, I present the following facts: natural gas is natural gas. It is the geologic formation, not the gas, that is fracked. This creates channels that allow …

Glenn S. Washburn: Draw circles in the sand instead of lines

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

To the editor: It’s that time of year again. It’s time for “The Great Merry Christmas Debate.” The new marketplace rule that says “Merry Christmas” is out and “Happy Holiday” is in ... the idea that saying “Merry Christmas” to someone who doesn’t celebrate Christmas is offensive. I …

John Daniel: A customer’s lament when an Academy of Music ticket price suddenly rises

Monday, December 1, 2014

To the editor: I’d like to register my displeasure with the Academy of Music. Sacrilege, I know. The Northampton institution that is rightly one of our great city’s claims to fame. John Hodgman performed there Nov. 21. Tickets were $20 according to the ad in the Gazette. It …

Jenny Fleming-Ives: All of Northampton must help care for downtown

Monday, December 1, 2014

To the editor: Late last month, as I read articles on the demise of the Northampton Business Improvement District downtown, I had the Petula Clark song “Downtown” in my head. Many may remember that hit song of 1964 with its catchy tune and even catchier lyrics: “When you’re …

Susan J. Adelson: BID plaintiffs saw a wrong and went after it

Monday, December 1, 2014

To the editor: As much as I am disappointed in Eric Suher’s lack of compliance with his liquor licenses in the city of Northampton, I don’t think he and fellow plaintiff Alan Sheinman are the “bad guys” in the case of the Northampton Business Improvement District. The two …

John Howard: More reader advice on home solar installations

Monday, December 1, 2014

To the editor: Instead of paying a lump sum, say, $30,000, for a photovoltaic solar electric system for your house, there is another way. The installation can be done in stages. Start with a 1,000 watt system which will cost about $5,000. I just put in a 2 …

Don Schneier: Plenty of problems with Northampton BID

Monday, November 24, 2014

To the editor: If, as the Gazette describes it in its Nov. 17 editorial, the BID was operating under a “legal cloud,” it was one of their own making, a product of overreach. But the problems were more than legal. They were moral: imposing an ethos of commercialism …

Anne Perkins: Applauding whistle-blowing waitresses in Hadley

Monday, November 24, 2014

To the editor: I am writing to applaud the waitresses who had the courage to speak out about their experiences of sexual harassment at the Route 9 Diner. Sadly, whistle-blowers are rarely honored in our society. Although I personally do not know Marie Billiel, Jaime Young or any …