Dear Ms. Lutton,

Like yourself, I know little of the Hispanic Democratic Organization mentioned in your story “War on Independents” [September 4]. However, I don’t feel any Hispanic organization that works to get out the vote in any election needs to justify or make apologies for getting involved.

Your mention of the Hispanic Democratic Organization made it appear that the people involved were merely motivated by “expensive City Hall jobs.” I know Al Sanchez, Ray Gamboa, and George Esquivel, and they also don’t need to justify or make apologies for being employed by the city. These are honorable men who certainly merit the support of the Hispanic community. Beyond their job responsibilities they all have a history of community service in South Chicago and the east side. It is true they can organize campaigns and help get the vote out, but they also support neighborhood Little League and basketball teams and respond to the needs of the community.

I don’t know if it’s the $2 toll of the Chicago Skyway or the curves and turns of Route 41 south that keeps journalists away from South Chicago and the east side, but these men grew up there and continue to help their neighbors. I invite you to visit these communities and see for yourself; both receive very little positive media coverage and even fewer issues of the Reader. Consider this an idea for another cover story.

Finally, I agree that the loss of Jesus Garcia as state senator will be a great loss to the Hispanic community. As for his opponent, he will now have a chance to prove himself as state senator. The fact remains that Hispanics in the First District did not vote. As the general election in November approaches, the Hispanic community needs to continue to organize, get involved, but most importantly on election day, VOTE!

Edgar Vargas

N. Rockwell