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Cohn/My Turn: Why our county’s great

Friday, February 12, 2016

Yes, Franklin County! We enjoy great education for our families, terrific recreation, and plenty of venues for music, theater, dining and friendship. When you live in a city there is so much to see and do but the personal relationships and sense of community may not be as wonderful as they are here in our beautiful and rural county. We are seeing signs … 0

In the Arena: Rethinking a Senate run

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Don’t call him “Sen. Mark.” At least, not yet. After initially taking himself out of the running, 2nd Berkshire state Rep. Paul Mark now says he’s pondering a run for the state Senate seat being vacated by Ben Downing, after 4th Berkshire Rep. Smitty Pignatelli took himself out of the race last week. “I’m thinking about it. That’s all at this point,” Mark … 0

Down To Earth: Life after plastic (bags)

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

A friend of mine recently forgot his reusable bags when he dropped in at Stop and Shop. To make matters worse, he’d also forgotten about Northampton’s new plastic bag ban, which started January 1st. Then the person in line behind him lectured him on the merits of the ban. “Don’t give me that,” … 0

Hootstein/My Turn: A drinking water threat

Friday, December 18, 2015

I’m a hydrogeologist who discovered a long time ago that I have a passion for protecting drinking water resources (like aquifers), and as they say, “follow your passion.” So, it may come as no surprise that I have become very interested in the proposed “fracked gas” pipeline. To … 4

In the Arena: As the year winds down

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Christmas falls on a Friday this year, so this will be my last offering for 2015. For a while now, I’ve been tempted to write a Festivus column, a la “Seinfeld,” because, quite frankly, I’ve got a lot of problems with you people. Well, OK, not really. But … 0

Fleming/My Turn: Some straight talk on big boxes, downtown

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Of late, the My Turns and letters to the editor concerning the big box and downtown have been filled with misinformation and personal attacks. While I can’t do anything about the personal attacks perpetuated by the anti-big box crowd, I can comment on the misinformation. First, Wal-Mart is … 8

DeBoer and Morehouse/My Turn: Finding a way to give more

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

As a country, we give away a larger proportion of our income to charity than any other nation. Regardless of how you slice the data — overall, per capita, size of the gifts or type of giving –— the United States is the most philanthropic nation in the … 0

Renaud/My Turn: Looking in the mirror

Monday, December 14, 2015

I grew up in a working class neighborhood in Lowell. If you’ve ever watched the movie “The Fighter,” then you’ve seen where I lived. Mickey Ward, the famous boxer whom the movie was based on, lived blocks away from us. The opening scene was shot in Couples Square, … 0

Tillona/My Turn: Virtual Academy role in educational success stories

Sunday, December 13, 2015

There has been much discussion in recent years about educational efforts statewide to reach and teach every child, regardless of a student’s personal circumstances, socio-economic status, language spoken at home, or developmental disability. Quality educators help every child reach his or her unique potential. We have seen charter … 0

Dvore/My Turn: Go with WiredWest

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Massachusetts Broadband Institute (MBI) recently released a public statement about their decision not to fund WiredWest’s proposal with no advance notice or supporting documentation. They make accusations that are inaccurate and misleading. MBI bases their criticism of WiredWest’s business plan on a report, which they will not … 0

Letter: Offended

Friday, December 11, 2015

I’m offended by folks who are offended by everything in today’s world. People have become whiny babies with nothing better to do than be offended by so much nonsense. What has happened to this country? People are offended by the Pledge of Allegiance. People are offended by prayer. … 2

In the Arena: Adding to reporter's tool belt

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The coverage of the Dan McCarthy/Confederate flag controversy of last week has sparked a bit of an ethical debate over the use of Facebook as a news source. Truth be told, it’s unlikely that story would have broken … 0

Brown/My Turn: Behind the visceral reaction

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The controversy surrounding the Confederate flag began while I was in Greenfield over Thanksgiving and I have been following its progress ever since. Chris Collins’s recent well-written column rightly warns us not to rush so easily to judgment … 1