Losing My Hero

It's time to continue her legacy. I know we’ve all seen a myriad of posts, articles, art, and more honoring Ruth Bader Ginsburg throughout the years, and especially now after her tragic passing. However, I have yet to see any writing pieces published concerning how it feels to have lost such an icon. As someone who has a self-diagnosed obsession with RBG, the news of her death left me with an overwhelmingly powerful and ever-present longing to do better and to be better for her, as well as a feeling similar to that of being punched in the stomach. It hurts, but you can’t pinpoint exactly where. Losing RBG aches, and it’s only been a week. 

RBG wasn’t just a Supreme Court Justice, she was a shining star for women everywhere. Having experienced a deep interest in the fight for gender equality for as long as I can remember, I experience no shame in stating that RBG was and IS one of my heroes. (Some background: she is on the tapestry on my wall, I have an RBG action figure on my desk --gotta get that motivation somewhere. I have a sweatshirt with her on it, and I have seen and cried to both the film “On The Basis of Sex” and the documentary about her life and her work). Needless to say, she’s an icon and has been a major factor in my development into the woman that I am today. Her relentless and forceful dynamic was one of a woman who felt no fault in fighting for what she knew was right. She fought for us.

For these reasons and countless others, losing RBG felt initially, and remains, inescapably excruciating. Every day when I get stressed about schoolwork or the future, I think of the women who have inspired me to be the best version of myself that I can be, namely my mother, my grandmother, and Ruth. These badass ladies are the ones who make me remember why I work so hard for what I want-why I want to do better, to be better, and to create a better atmosphere for my fellow humans, as they have done in so many ways for me and everyone around them.

Putting politics and the debate concerning the future of SCOTUS aside, remembering RBG and her legacy is imperative to continuing to get better as people and as a country. She embodied the idea that it doesn't matter who you are because everyone can change the world. RBG was born in 1933, only 13 years after the ratification of the 19th Amendment. Considering this, we can comprehend that she was not given any free rides through her education or her career. She was the underdog. Whether or not one agrees with what RBG stood for in a political sense, we all must take note of all that she did for women in America. For example, Ginsburg was a co-founder of the incredible Women’s Rights Project at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). She won 5 of the 6 cases that she tirelessly argued in front of the Supreme Court and ultimately worked for the eradication of sexism in the legal system. Also, she was the first Jewish woman to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. These are only a few of the many victories on her immeasurable list of accomplishments. Needless to say, she's an icon. 

Ruth Bader Ginsburg was someone who gave the majority of her life to enhance and better the lives of the American people. She was a true public servant. Learning of her death was not something I ever imagined I would have to endure, and the tears streaming down my cheeks felt unreal as I read the article that alarmed both my head and my heart. It had been a dream of mine for ages to one day clerk for Justice Ginsburg, and I plan to spend my life following in her footsteps, working towards eradicating gender inequality globally. Finding an icon and someone to look up to and inspire us is not always an easy task, but RBG gave this to me and countless others. I will never forget her words, her actions, or her disposition and incredible life. In the words of my forever hero, “I would like to be remembered as someone who used whatever talent she had to do her work to the very best of her ability." Rest in power.