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My Turn: Both sides now
02-20-2024 5:18 PM

By DEBORAH ESTHER SCHIFTER

In October 1973, a few months after graduating from college in Annapolis, Maryland, I was living on a kibbutz teaching mathematics to a cadre of American teenagers who were spending their sophomore year in Israel.On Yom Kippur, my holiday celebration...

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Billboards in Northampton, Greenfield to advertise resources for domestic violence victims
02-10-2024 5:53 PM

Two billboards going up in prominent spots in Northampton and Greenfield will call attention to the prevalence of intimate partner violence in the community, offering phone numbers to call for help.Staff with the Northwestern District Attorney’s...


Diocese sues Northampton for right to remove church windows before selling St. Mary church
02-07-2024 11:08 AM

By ALEXANDER MACDOUGALL

NORTHAMPTON — The Roman Catholic Diocese of Springfield has filed a lawsuit against Northampton, claiming a stop-work order preventing the removal of stained glass windows at the former St. Mary of the Assumption Church ahead of an impending sale...


My Turn: The illusion of kinder, gentler executions
02-04-2024 10:28 AM

By BILL NEWMAN

This past week Alabama continued our country’s experiment with different ways to kill people. It executed Kenneth Smith.A brief history. In the American colonies, death sentences, imported from Great Britain, were by hanging. Hanging could be...


PFAS, slew of other agriculture-related bills on the move on Beacon Hill
02-01-2024 3:33 PM

By SCOTT MERZBACH

NORTHAMPTON — Prohibiting PFAS from consumer products sold in Massachusetts remains an objective for Sen. Jo Comerford, who sees a recently advanced legislative bill to protect soil and farms from such contamination as an important first step to...


Regional agricultural conference set for Saturday in Northampton
02-01-2024 10:59 AM

By EMILEE KLEIN

NORTHAMPTON — The Pioneer Valley Regional Agricultural Conference planned for Saturday will present three guest speakers on low-impact forestry, cheese making and small-scale maple syrup production for agricultural professionals looking to diversify...


Jack Hornor: Trump backers aren’t somehow ‘less than’
01-31-2024 6:19 PM

I am not a supporter of Donald Trump, and I have many negative feelings about his presidency. But I have no negative feelings about anyone who voted for him or who supports him now.Almost 63 million people voted for Trump. These people are husbands,...


If the land could speak: Community gardens are located on land with stories echoing social justice roots
01-26-2024 12:39 PM

By PAT JAMES

Community gardens grow on all kinds of land. Many gardens start as derelict lots, long abandoned by owners who sometimes reclaim the property after community gardeners reveal its beauty and productivity.Schools and parks are common sites for community...


My Turn: Dems need a border solution
01-24-2024 5:14 PM

By ANNE-LOUISE SMALLEN

Immigration is a serious problem for Democrats in the 2024 presidential election. As everything else in the country, it is polarized and lacks a middle road solution.Many Americans fear a return to Donald Trump’s policies of separating families or...


Probation for 2 in UMass procurement fraud case
01-19-2024 1:38 PM

By JAMES PENTLAND

NORTHAMPTON — A long-running case against two men accused of conspiring to defraud the University of Massachusetts through an environmental remediation company ended this week with the men admitting to sufficient facts and being placed on...


Aviation community mourns deaths of flight instructor, others from Sunday plane crash
01-16-2024 7:26 PM

By JAMES PENTLAND

NORTHAMPTON — A flyer since her teens, Fly Lugu flight school founder Fredrika Ballard was remembered this week as a consummate professional who worked hard to support opportunities for women in aviation.Ballard, 53, of Southwick, was killed Sunday...


My Turn: Fighting back against library book banners
01-12-2024 5:00 PM

By BILL NEWMAN

This is scary. The number of books being banned in school libraries is spiraling upwards. Nationwide, for the 2022-2023 school year, PEN America substantiated 3,362 school book bans that targeted 1,557 unique titles. That’s a 33 percent increase from...


My Turn: Death of children too high a price
01-04-2024 5:24 PM

By CLAUDIA LEFKO

The U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child issued a statement on grave violations of children’s rights in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory on Oct. 13. “We reiterate that the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) requires States...


Healey nominates local lawyer Bernadette Stark for Probate and Family Court judgeship
01-02-2024 11:14 AM

By JAMES PENTLAND

NORTHAMPTON — A local lawyer who is now director of the Student Legal Services Office at the University of Massachusetts Amherst has been nominated to be a judge in Probate and Family Court.Gov. Maura Healey nominated Bernadette Stark and two other...


My Turn: Old-school words still come in handy
12-29-2023 7:29 PM

By SUSAN WOZNIAK

As summer was winding down, I had a conversation with a young woman. Something she said, led me to answer, “That’s out of my bailiwick.” She looked puzzled and asked, “What’s a bailiwick?” I chuckled a bit and said, “Your generation uses the word...


Columnist Carrie Baker: Democracy and women’s rights in 2024
12-28-2023 7:54 PM

By CARRIE N. BAKER

Over 60 percent of Americans support abortion rights, but last year Roe was overturned and 14 states now ban abortions in most circumstances. A president who lost the popular vote by millions appointed three staunch opponents of abortion to the...


A ‘moral obligation’ to act: Six arrested during October protest at L3Harris appear in court
12-14-2023 6:59 PM

By ALEXANDER MACDOUGALL

NORTHAMPTON — Sonya Epstein was crystal clear before a Hampshire District Court judge Thursday afternoon when explaining why she took part in a protest outside the Northampton facility of defense contractor L3Harris that led to her arrest two months...


Susan Donaldson: Are pigs flying?
12-12-2023 6:26 PM

What with global warming, it seems unlikely that hell will freeze over anytime soon. But the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) order last week that Massachusetts move away from fossil gas makes one wonder! [“State to curtail natural gas expansion,”...


My Turn: We all deserve the privilege of normalcy
12-12-2023 6:15 AM

Nearly 40 years ago, I entered a college classroom as the instructor for the first time. I was a 23-year-old graduate teaching assistant, charged with my very own section of English composition. Twenty-five students silently inspected me as I placed...


Northampton couple running state DeSantis campaign
12-07-2023 5:12 PM

By JAMES PENTLAND

NORTHAMPTON — Continuing their high-profile involvement in state Republican politics, city physician Jay Fleitman and his wife, Mary Lou Stuart, are heading up the Ron DeSantis presidential campaign for Massachusetts.The two have co-chaired the...


My Turn: Giving myself the grace to relax this Christmas
12-06-2023 10:16 PM

By JOANNA BUONICONTI

As everyone knows, the Christmas season can be perpetually chaotic and stressful. Between shopping, get-togethers with family and friends, cooking, baking and putting up decorations, it’s a holiday that brings out the perfectionists in all of us....

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