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On May 9, 2014, Students for a Democratic Society and the local student chapter of Physicians for Human Rights held a vigil to remember the tenth anniversary of the suicide of Dan Markingson. Speakers at the vigil included Eden Almasude, a medical student at the university; Mike Howard a family friend of Dan Markingson’s mother, Mary Weiss; Carl Elliott, and me. The speakers commemorated Dan Markingson’s death and called for an investigation of allegations of psychiatric research misconduct.
Following the vigil outside McNamara Center there was a protest at the Board of Regents’ public meeting. Campus security guards blocked student protestors attempting to deliver a coffin to the Board of Regents. Following this symbolic action, over twenty protestors interrupted the meeting. Each of them carried a single white flower to mark the ten-year anniversary of Markingson’s death. Regents were presented with the flowers. As the protestors moved through the room, Richard Beeson, Chair of the Board of Regents, demanded that they return to their seats or face expulsion from the room.
In remarks delivered to the Regents, I asked, “Are you prepared for what a thorough investigation of psychiatric trials here might find?… Are you ready for the possibility of multiple lawsuits brought by victims of psychiatric research misconduct?”
Carl Elliott, “Forget it Jake. It’s Dinkytown,” Fear and Loathing in Bioethics, May 7, 2014.