Opposition Senator Esteban Bullrich has been diagnosed with ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, a neurodegenerative neuromuscular disease whose average incidence worldwide is about one in 50,000 people per year. In the last few days, Bullrich has been interviewed by several journalists and has spoken openly and frankly about his current situation. Watching and listening to him is quite moving, and I admit I couldn’t help but cry. Such bravery, such honesty, such dignity, such faith, such positive attitude while suffering this incurable illness are worthy of reverence and admiration. We know little about ALS and, by describing it, Bullrich has shed some light on its symptons and treatment. Moreover, he has donated the recent 40% increase in his parliamentary allowance to its research. “Life is today”, he said several times. That rings so true nowadays, in the midst of this pandemic, when so many friends, relatives, neighbours and acquaintances have died from Covid. “Hard Times”, as Charles Dickens would put it. Bullrich is teaching us a vital lesson.    

Irene Bianchi for Buenos Aires Times