Black Lives Matter

The leader of a group in Springfield that has organized well-attended Black Lives Matter rallies told the Valley Post she questions a February 8 Associated Press article headlined, “Study Finds No Evidence Of Racial Disparity In Massachusetts Traffic Stops.” On February 9, Tanisha Arena told the Valley Post, “They conducted this (study) during 2020 when the world was shut down. Does that impact this data in any way? ... I find it hard to believe that there was no disparity in Hadley (near Northampton). I’d like to see this data in a city like Springfield where folks are regularly pulled over for driving while black. I feel like traffic stops aren’t about preventing any kind of crime but about looking for evidence of crime. In Hadley, where there aren’t as many people of color, I’m surprised that anyone passing through isn’t pulled over under the presumption of being out of place and not belonging.”

Arena runs a group that has web site at


The white men who have run the public schools in Brattleboro in recent decades tolerated racism and failed to stop sexual abuse of students by at least one teacher, activists say. The current leaders should be replaced with women of color, according to the activists. Dozens of people signed a letter accusing the current school leadership of tolerating racism. The letter appeared in the February 8 edition of the Brattleboro Reformer newspaper. The letter urges people to go to and get involved.

Activists succeeded in recent months in getting the Bratttleboro school board to hire a local lawyer to set up a web page where people can report sexual abuse of students by teachers and staff:

$70,000 a year is the average price among dozens of boarding schools in New England and New York. Meanwhile in Utah last year the average K-12 public school student was worth a $7,628 annual investment, according to that state's governor and legislature. Utah spends the least of any state. New York spends the most. It spent $24,040. At least one private school in Vermont has a student-teacher ratio of 1:1 for all students. (Students at the school spend much less time in class than they do in public schools but get a better education. They spend the rest of their time skiing with their friends. Hiking is an alternative to skiing.) In Arizona public schools the average student-teacher ratio is 43:1. Meanwhile many billionaires pay no taxes and the military gets half the federal budget.


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