Dan Canon’s powerful words about health care: “We *can* be incremental in our approaches, but we must – we MUST – be revolutionary in our aspirations.”


For once, LinkedIn has proven useful. It provides this bio of New Albany resident Dan Canon.

Dan Canon

Attorney at Clay Daniel Walton Adams, PLC

Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville Louis D. Brandeis School of Law at the University of Louisville

Civil rights/constitutional lawyer, educator, and writer. Extensive trial/litigation experience in both state and federal courts. Has argued civil rights and constitutional cases before numerous appellate courts, including the Supreme Court of Kentucky and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Kentucky’s counsel of record in the U.S. Supreme Court case of Obergefell v. Hodges, which brought marriage equality to all 50 states. Currently represents plaintiffs in the highly publicized case of Miller v. Davis, involving the issuance of marriage licenses in Rowan County, Kentucky. Plaintiffs’ counsel in high-profile cases involving criminal justice issues, including malicious prosecution/wrongful conviction, inmates’ rights, and excessive force cases.

Adjunct professor of civil rights litigation at the Louis D. Brandeis School of Law. Adjunct professor of criminal justice for Indiana’s state college system. Lecturer in continuing legal education credits on topics related to municipal/government litigation, police liability, employment law, and human resources, among others. Quoted extensively in national and international publications such as Time, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Al Jazeera, the New York Times, etc. Frequent panelist on a variety of topics pertaining to civil rights/civil liberties.

Also a semi-professional musician and music teacher when not practicing law (which is admittedly rare).

Specialties: Constitutional Litigation, LGBT rights, Employment Law, Appellate Advocacy, Civil Rights Litigation, Human Rights, Inmates’ Rights, Criminal Justice Reform, Research and Writing, Guitar Instruction & Performance

Following is a comment of Dan’s on Facebook.

Local Democrats of a more youthful slant are applauding these words, as well they should. But are solid principles like these compatible at all with what our local DemoDisneyDixiecrats have tended to ignore in the past?

Read Dan’s words, and try to imagine an insipid and graft-ridden Jeff Gahan saying them. It can’t be done, can it?

After all, as junior editor Gillenwater notes …

In the same week the Gahan administration used a lackey packed board to complete its hostile takeover of public housing, it spent tax dollars to produce a video touting new amenities at its members only dog park.

And this:

Jeff Gahan and cronies are trying to take away housing. Donald Trump and cronies are trying to take away healthcare. Different parties, different levels of government, same … 

All right, youthful local Democrats. Your challenge should be clear. How do you square political principle (Dan’s words below) with principle’s persistent absence (survey Gahan’s career to date)?

When you come up with the answer, can you let me know? I’d dearly love to have a reason to support you.

Nancy Pelosi doesn’t think that single payer should be in the Democrats’ 2018 party platform. I don’t get it. I’m not sure what she, or anyone in Congress, plans to do about healthcare in the long run. In my view, this isn’t a situation that calls for a measured, tepid response.

The healthcare system we have in this country has become one of the ugliest products of cutthroat capitalism in the modern world. I recognize that’s a high bar. But think about it in the abstract: you’re sick with something that can be fixed. If you don’t have enough money to pay for the fix, you die. The fix gets more and more expensive all the time, and is more expensive still if you’ve ever been sick before. There are people in America – the wealthiest country in the history of the world – who have to choose between medicine, housing, and food. And there are people in America – the wealthiest country in the history of the world – who actually die because they don’t have enough money to get treatment. That’s absurd. It’s insane. It’s totally immoral. No country on earth does that to its own citizens. But we just keep on accepting it. And there are people – a LOT of people – in our government who are openly fighting to maintain it.

How long can a system like that last? When do we as a society stop tolerating it? If someone had a life-threatening infection that could be cured with a simple antibiotic, a pharmaceutical company priced that drug at $100,000.00 per pill, and people were dying en masse because they didn’t have that kind of money, would that be the breaking point? Or would we just shrug, throw people on the carts, and say “sorry folks, you should have worked harder”?

The ACA put a finger-sized band-aid on our gushing artery of a healthcare system. That’s about to get ripped off. Even if it doesn’t, we’re still basically stuck with the same problem. We’ve got to demand real change from the roots, not just the branches. And that starts with an end goal in which everyone gets the care they need, regardless of wealth. We have to envision that, talk about it, and start making it real. If it’s not “single payer” per se, it needs to be something.

We *can* be incremental in our approaches, but we must – we MUST – be revolutionary in our aspirations.