Despite local advocacy, there wasn’t a lot to say about progressive activist Ady Barkan before his 2016 ALS diagnosis. But what he did since elevated him above most other terminally ill activists. He experienced firsthand the clusterfuck labyrinth that is the US health care system, only able to pay for treatment after successfully suing his insurance company, and became a strident voice in favour of single-payer healthcare. In the early years of the Trump administration, he memorably squared off against sensible moderate Republicans™ Jeff Flake and Susan Collins as they focused on the Trump tax cuts and installing a(nother) far-right rapist on the Supreme Court.
If the attempts at reasoning with corporate fossils ended as you would expect, there was much to admire in Barkan’s tenacity, and without fighters like him you do not get the occasional sigh of relief such as the McCain thumbs down. He was 39. Though the DDP consensus has largely been Barkan up the wrong tree with their ALS picks, with Rob Burrow, Steve McMichael, and Roberta Flack among the phalanx defying their canon status, Barkan had a respectable 17 picks to his name, notably bringing Pan Breed to 6th place.
18 December 1983 – 1 November 2023, aged 39
17 TEAMS (💀💀💀💀💀💀💀💀💀💀 10 POINTS)