Havana’s malecon seawall. Photo: Deborah Castellanos

HAVANA TIMES — Recently we at Havana Times were surprised and pleased to receive the following letter from Charles Boesen, a US reader who took the time to address his concerns about US-Cuba policy by writing directly to his President.

With his permission, below are an edited version of his original letter to HT, plus original scans of his letter to Obama and of Obama’s reply.

HT thanks Mr. Boessen for taking the time to let us know of his efforts, and invites other readers who desire a change in the US policy towards Cuba to follow his example.

Dear Editor,

I’ve read your Havana Times with great interest for many months now…

Lately, many articles have been written about “change” in Cuba, and in the comment section many viewpoints are bantered back and forth. But the one thing that I can assure you is that Americans do not “hate” Cubans, as someone said. Americans, for the most part, are kind and generous people, no matter what you’ve been told.

The only reason more Americans are not all up in arms about Cuba, and the outdated embargo, is that they don’t know Cuba even exists (I’m saying that with a bit of sarcasm).

I’ve visited Cuba many times and when I share my Cuban adventure stories with other Americans, most of the time I get a blank stare. Some who are well informed want to know more and are excited to hear, but that is rare, maybe 1 out of 10.

So, I thought I could contribute something interesting to your blog: I wrote a letter to our president spelling out my concerns for Cuba, and I got a response. Needless to say I was very excited. I’m attaching my letter to President Obama and also the response from him. From what I could find out, his mail handlers forward about a dozen letters a day for him to read. I’m sure he receives thousands a day.

Thank you and keep up the good work.

Charles Boesen
Appleton, Wisconsin





17 thoughts on “HT Reader Writes to Obama, Gets Reply

  • It is the ultimate hypocrisy for our government, the American government, to inflict such economic pain and hardship upon the Cuban people to supposedly effect a change in government over which they have no effective control. There can be nothing more “un-American” and it all must end now.

  • Somewhere in the bowels of the Executive Office Building some drudge grinds out these letters. You can tell by the vague boilerplate responses. The correspondent who replied to Mr. Boeson is most assuredly not President Obama; s/he takes his/her lead from the official line. I know of what I speak. For several years during the 1970’s I labored as literary secretary to a famous author (who here and forevermore remains anonymous). The difference between the White House drudge and myself was that, like Mickey Mouse in Disney’s “Fantasia,” to relieve the boredom while “the master” was away I got into trouble by writing a few outrageous responses, signing my master’s name, then sending ’em off under his letterhead! I don’t think any of the President’s men (or women) whould take such chances now, though.

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