I recently blasted the American Library Association for refusing to stand up for 10 imprisoned independent librarians in Cuba–people who set up small libraries in their homes so that Cubans can have access to books are that hard to obtain through the Castro dictatorship’s official library system. The Cuban librarians were sentenced last year to prison terms totaling 196 year for violating a vaguely worded national security law that makes it a felony to possess “subversive” reading materials. The conditions under which the political prisoners are being held are, from all reports, ghastly: hard labor, six-foot-by-three-foot cages, beatings by other prisoners, and almost no access to adequate medical care or hygiene. 

Nonetheless, Fidel Castro, the sclerotic left-wing tyrant who has shot or imprisoned thousands and systematically impoverished his country since he came to power in 1959, continues to have his fans. Here’s InkWell reader P.T., writing to defend Fidel:

“Cuba, the one Latin American country whose capital is not surrounded by shanytowns, is a human rights oasis compared to some of the death-squad regimes the U.S. supports–countries where homeless children are murdered by security forces with Anerican weapons.”

Hmm, P.T., let’s see. In some politically corrupt Latin American countries, such as Colombia, gangs of thugs, often with ties to the drug trade, roam city streets murdering the homeless beggars who live on those streets. I guess you could call them “death squads,” and in some very loose sense of the term, you could call them “security forces.” The criminal gangs somehow get hold of U.S.-manufactured weapons, just in the way that U.S. drug dealers somehow get hold of cocaine processed in and shipped out of Colombia. I fail to see how any of this is the American government’s fault. As for Cuba’s capital not being “surrounded by shantytowns,” that’s because Cuba’s capital, from all reports, is a shantytown, thanks to Uncle Fidel.

And a reader who identifies herself (or himself) only as “Anonymous” thinks that The Other Charlotte and I have been unduly unkind to Omarosa Manigault-Stalworth, the contestant just fired from NBC’s Donald Trump-starring reality show The Apprentice for whining, undermining morale, and slacking off when there was work to be done:

“I would think that an organization that calls itself the Independent Women’s Forum would be able to fully appreciate a woman of substance and strength such as Omarosa. She showed us that she could work as hard and think as quickly as the men. She showed strength and unequaled female authority on Trump’s show. Give credit where credit is due. She has the strength, motivation, and personal power to run anyone’s company. Watch out Donald Trump!!”

Anonymous, we’ll take you up on your word. Tomorrow TOC and I will be filing our thoughts about how the Trump teams fare tonight in the absence of Omarosa’s female authority.

Finally, here’s an InkWell  fan letter and a suggestion for improvement from reader H.W.:

“I was so relieved to see that there is an organization fighting for what real American women believe. I am so sick and tired of NOW [the National Organization for Women] pretending like they represent the ‘majority’ of women. NOW has their own agenda and could care less what the average woman stands for. Thank you for giving conservative American women a voice! Thank you for fighting for me! I think I have found a new Internet home. Is there any chance that the IWF website will start an online forum?”

We’d love to have an online forum or comments threads for our our readers. Right now, however, we at InkWell don’t have the time or  resources to monitor such a forum continually to censor out the rude, the perverts, the Holocaust-deniers, and the other crazies who are drawn to such discussion forums. I teach college Latin, and TOC is writing two books at the same time. At some future date, however, we may be able to provide such an opportunity for lively discussion among our readers. Meanwhile, keep the letters coming. We’ll post as many of them as we can.