Letters to the Editor

To the students:

I was embarrassed by the manner in which you “celebrated” after the Red Sox World Series clinching victory on Wednesday night. You have embarrassed yourselves, your families, the university and its alumni. I was a freshman in 1967 when the Red Sox impossible dream took place and we celebrated in a nonviolent, sensible manner. I hope you will learn from this sad display and show the public that you know how to celebrate the right way.


Al Halpern ‘71

Goffstown, NH

November 2, 2013


To the editor:

Today I slept in until 10 a.m. Days like this are when I think back to high school and how, at times, it could be an extremely unhealthy environment. Oftentimes I wonder how I was able to wake up so early and function productively five days a week. Reading “Effects of sleep deprivation on teenage brain” (10/22/13) by Elise Martorano took me back to a scarily sleepless four years of my life.

Years ago I heard about school systems swapping the starting times. To keep things consistent and working on time with the bus system, the elementary schools would start first, then the middle school and finally the high school. I remember wondering if this was ever possible in my school system. Of course parents said no and created excuses about it interfering with the after school activities, such as clubs, sports, theater, etc. In order to create a more beneficial learning environment though, school officials need to the put the wellbeing of students before the students’ own busy schedules in order to drastically improve their lives.

Scrolling through my Twitter feed throughout the day, I read breaking news stories of high school shootings, teens committing suicide and more negative news related to teenagers. Unbearable pressure or a tragic event may result in a young person’s emotional breakdown. What if we could eliminate some of their challenges and stressors with just an extra hour of sleep? Who knows, maybe then kids in high school will actually be nice to each other.


Caroline Adler

Amherst, MA

October 30, 2013


To the editor:

The article “Nev. shooting leaves 2 dead” discusses the recent school shooting in Nevada. After reading the article, I realized our society needs to immediately address these tragedies. The article ultimately fails to address and provide any viable solutions to end these relentless catastrophes.

It seems like every week or so there’s another story about a school shooting. How many lives need be lost for the government to realize that this is a serious problem in our country today? Since 1980, nearly 300 school shooting-related deaths have occurred. To me, those are 300 too many. How is it that a middle school student could so easily obtain a gun and take a life? Parents should not fear sending their children to school and as a 19 year old college student, I should not fear for my life on campus. The government must immediately address these issues before even more lives are senselessly taken.


Garnette Goorahlal

Amherst, MA

October 31, 2013


To the editors:

Students promoting the Fossil Free divestment campaign appear to have not properly researched the reasons for, or implications of, their campaign. If they had done their homework, they would realize that: (i) today’s climate change is not out of bounds with the natural variability that geologists see in the past; (ii) the idea that dangerous climate change will happen because of emissions from human activities is merely an hypothesis, one that is looking increasingly improbable as science advances and (iii) if dangerous change was happening, then we should increase our use of hydrocarbon fuels, especially coal, the cheapest and most abundant source of power.

In the event of climate problems, however caused, more electricity would be needed to handle greater demands for air conditioning and heating. More power would be required to irrigate lands, build dikes, strengthen public infrastructure and relocate populations living on flood plains or at risk from tornadoes and hurricanes.

Yet the students promote wind and solar power, the least reliable and most expensive options available, instead of our most reliable and cheapest energy sources, hydrocarbon fuels.

Moving away from our strongest power sources because of climate concerns is analogous to a ship captain ordering his crew into lifeboats when a severe storm is approaching. It would be harmful to abandon ship exactly when the protection of a sturdy vessel is most needed. Similarly, it is harmful to attempt to quickly move away from today’s dependable energy sources, no matter what the climate does.


Tom Harris

Ottawa, Ontario

October 30, 2013


Tom Harris is the executive director of the International Climate Science Coalition, a group of climate change skeptics.