Editorial pages may question my hiring, but I will fight for what’s necessary

SHARE Editorial pages may question my hiring, but I will fight for what’s necessary

Democratic Attorney General Primary Candidate Kwame Raoul. | Rich Hein/Sun-Times

Regarding the editorial: “Should a candidate for attorney general hire a guy who scammed Illinois?”

As a Chicagoan, it troubles me that there continues to exist a sustained effort to marginalize and exclude ex-offenders from social, economic, and political opportunities.

I acknowledge and admit to my transgressions and the impact that my actions have had on my family, friends, and the public trust. I have repaid my debt to society and dedicate the remainder of my life to regaining that trust. I am thankful that the law in Illinois terminates felony disenfranchisement upon release from incarceration, allowing hundreds of thousands of state residents to engage fully in our democratic process.

SEND LETTERS TO: letters@suntimes.com. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes.

It is my mission to make sure that the voting electorate, especially those in vulnerable African-American communities, is fully informed about the candidates for elected office who will represent them. My job is simple – it is to facilitate potential voter contact with prospective candidates through neighborhood canvassing, phone banking and literature distribution. The primary goal is to provide information to communities that have traditionally been ignored, empowering citizens to make informed decisions about who will best represent them in their various capacities of public service.

Despite the recent attempts by both major newspapers to disqualify me from continuing to work in our electoral process, I will continue to fight for what is necessary and needed. Issues related to education funding, gun laws, property taxes, pension, and health care, are too important to let any back door political character assassination stop me from proving access and information for our distressed neighborhoods.

Bamani Obadele, Chicago

A blank front page?

Please do not scare me like that again! Monday’s front page was a startling message of what our very near future could be. I am a devoted reader and SunTimes’ triple-crossword solver. I hope the Chicago Sun-Times printed circulation continues unswayed by the ever-growing giant chasm in readership that is … our phone!

Rosemarie Sulek, Wildwood

Yes, tell the stories of LGBTQ people

Kudos to the Sun-Times for its April 22 editorial advocating that students be taught about the contributions made to society by gays, lesbians and others.

Crediting Bayard Rustin for his key role in organizing important 1960s civil rights demonstrations was particularly pertinent, given how black pastors and ministers historically have snubbed him for his sexual orientation, pretending his contributions, so pivotal to the success of that struggle, were unimportant.

You also named as additional examples the astronaut Sally Ride and the father of computer science, Alan Turing. Omitted, though, was the additional fact that Turing also is credited for decrypting the captured WW II German “Enigma” machine (code-named “Ultra” by the British) used so effectively to guide “wolf packs” of U-boats to sink Allied cargo ships in the Atlantic. Turing’s breakthrough enabled the Allies to sink German submarines efficiently.

The list of such people, open or closeted, is of course much longer. The pictured Legacy Wall art installation, now on display at Lyons Township High School in La Grange, is a constructive, overdue step in showing how this sexual-orientation minority made and is making contributions beneficial to all, much as racial and language minorities have long done, with credit for it deliberately withheld. Likely the parents could learn as much from the art installation as the kids.

Ted Z. Manuel, Hyde Park

Another reason we need elected school board

Your revelation that the Chicago Public Schools has extended, at a greatly increased cost, the contract to Aramark to supposedly keep the schools clean, truly highlights the major problem with our school board; it is an appointed entity with no responsibility to the taxpayers of Chicago.

Every school district in Illinois is elected except Chicago’s, and I would wager that Aramark would be out the door if the school board members saw the anger of the taxpayers. We have to shell out additional money to a company that has proven it cannot — or will not — meet its contractual obligations. It is long past time for Springfield to act on this and give us the basics of representative democracy; the right to elect those who are charged with carrying out a public task with public funding.

George Milkowski, West Ridge

Not buying Comey’s book

Gene Lyons is 100 percent correct: “No Comey, no Trump.” I will not spend one penny on the former FBI director’s book. James Comey is the single reason Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton for president. Had he not come out with the announcement of a renewed investigation into her email account, Hillary would have won the election. She now would be president. Maybe someday the truth will come out about the timing of Comey’s last-minute announcement of the reopening of that email investigation.

George Pfeifer, Evanston

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