Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Talkback

There are studies and some currently in progress that show fracking is more harmful to the environment than coal. A recent study on PA wells show that 1 out of 20 wells is leaking into groundwater aquifers. A few members of Congress are asking the EPA to re-open their investigation of water contamination in 4 states (in which they originally said that fracking caused the water contamination, only to reverse their decision after being bullied by gas companies). To say that natural gas is relatively clean is incorrect given all the recent evidence saying otherwise. ...(full comment)

Don Robinson: What’s at stake in pipeline proposal

If the Germans were armed, maybe we wouldn't have had the Nazi's take control of Germany. 50 million people died because of that. We can partially chalk that up to people not being gun owners in Europe. From the statistics I've seen, more lives are saved by gun owners than those who are killed by preventing violent crimes from occuring, and lets not forget most gun deaths in the US are self inflicted by people commiting suicide. The real problem with these recent school shootings is that the people who committed them were on some form of psychiatric drug prescribed by a doctor. That and violence in the media and video games. Until we address these issues the problem won't go away. Stop Big Medicene from giving drugs to kids and shame Big Hollywood into not making violent movies. ...(full comment)

Albert ten Cate: Why isn’t NRA declared a terrorist organization?

"[The Netherlands] have a rich history of slavery and colonization." You don't think you could have just made the argument that there is a long and socially-validated tradition of private gun ownership in the U.S. without implying that our own country wasn't deeply involved in slavery and colonialism? Because this almost sounds like your saying that the second amendment is there to protect us from being enslaved by scary Dutch people. And maybe we can be a little classier than telling immigrants to "go back where they came from" when we disagree with them? Maybe? No? I guess you're too invested in making all your arguments from a place of victimhood. ...(full comment)

Albert ten Cate: Why isn’t NRA declared a terrorist organization?

There is something wonderful about going into a physical store where the owner is on the premises and has full knowledge of what he is selling. The breadth of Steve's knowledge is not replaceable--not by the ease of shopping on the Internet and especially not by the silence of it. ...(full comment)

Amherst Music House joins other businesses leaving Carriage Shops with building’s sale pending

The National Enquirer? So that's where you get your news, which all makes sense now. National Enquirer? ...(full comment)

Walter Krzeminski: Question raised over issue of coming out

To quote a bumper sticker I saw this week: "Keep talking, I'm diagnosing you." ...(full comment)

Walter Krzeminski: Question raised over issue of coming out

Wrong iagaini Walter! Gay teachers, firefighters, police officers and teachers come out publicly every day. Just because you don't read about it in the paper doesn't mean that it doesn't happen. This is not usually covered by the media. Political figures are a different story: A candidate for Hampden District Attorney who recently came out was front page news. Local politicians Stan Rosenberg, Cheryl Coakley-Rivera, Alex Morse and former Rep. Barney Frank have come out publicly, Senator Rosenberg doing so in this very newspaper. As more people wake up to the fact that homosexuality is not a choice, it is appropriate and heart warming that sports figures be open regarding their orientation. ...(full comment)

Walter Krzeminski: Question raised over issue of coming out

Before taxpayers pay for this dam's removal and the demise of the beautiful little reservoir behind it, why not get in the car or hop on a bike and go see what your tax dollars are about to destroy. But be careful of the giant potholes along the way on Chesterfield Rd. After that ride, and then seeing the tiny reservoir and historic, sturdy dam, think about just where you would rather have the DPW spend your tax dollars. You may pay 25% of the $1.5 million estimated cost or you may end up paying for all of it. I say that paying for ANY part of the demolition of this beautiful and ecologically diverse site is wrong because the DPW and GZA's assertions that all of Leeds could be under water as a result of this solid granite dam spontaneously collapsing is a theory that is flawed beyond belief. Perhaps the city has plans to reclassify the surrounding land from flood zone and put in a new landfill in that area? Something's fishy here, and it's not in the river water. ...(full comment)

State designates removal of Upper Roberts Meadow Dam in Northampton as ‘priority project’

Thank you, Steve, for your hard work on this issue and for this passionate and persuasive letter. ...(full comment)

Steve Herrell: School start-time issue in Northampton will not just fade away

What a sweet story, Elizabeth is a resilient and strong woman. ...(full comment)

Promise keeper Elizabeth Kelly of Easthampton will run the Boston Marathon in honor of late husband

The problem with (writer)of this letter to the paper "purports" things I never wrote. Learn how to read and comprehend what is written before you put words I never wrote in print. ...(full comment)

Stephanie Pick: Aging parents letter shows lack of understanding

In my experience, the zoning board trips over itself to agree with whatever a property owner wants, regardless of the impact to other people in the neighborhood. I think this should change. ...(full comment)

Robin Morris: ‘Mountaintop removal’ underway beside Puffer’s Pond in Amherst

Clare Higgins, as mayor of Northampton, saw up-close the affect of charter funding on the local districts. And it did, indeed, pit families against each other here. Please don't blame the parents in the district schools for that divide -- that's passing the buck in a huge way. The reason it has caused a divide is two-fold, in my opinion. One is that the funding mechanism meant that public schools were losing money. Two, locally the charter schools were NOT in fact educating equal numbers of special education students, students of color, or ELL students. Your statement -- "State government data shows that charters enroll far higher percentages of minorities, low-income and at-risk children than districts." -- is absolutely not true locally. In fact, local charter schools have fewer students (per capita) in every one of those categories. So the district schools were left with students who may cost more to educate, and yet they were given less money to do it. It created a 2-tier system. One of privilege and one for everyone else. If the funding can be equalized, and if the charters can find a way to attract a more diverse pool of students I think that will be a huge step forward for the two systems to work together. Personally I think the charter schools have a lot to offer -- we just have to find a way for them to be offered to everyone who wants to go, and we have to find a way that they can exist while the district schools also thrive. ...(full comment)

Marc Kenen: Time for bitterness toward charter schools to end