Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, known better by her superhero name RBG, passed away on September 18th, 2020. Justice Ginsburg can only be described as a true heroine, even those who oppose her views admire her strength, will, and fight. As we mourn the loss of such a historic woman, I’d like to share more about her legacy, as it goes far beyond the superwoman justice we know and love.
Ginsburg graduated from Cornell at the top of her class in 1954. From there, she went on to earn her law degree from Harvard, where she was only one of nine women in her class of 500. After transferring to Columbia and finishing her degree, she struggled to find a law firm that would hire a woman, so she became a professor at Columbia and directed the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union. She served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia until she was finally appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1993.
Ginsburg was only the second female justice to serve on the Supreme Court. Throughout her life she not only championed for gender equality, but defied all stereotypes. I highly encourage you to watch the documentary, “RBG” (available on Hulu), where her friends describe her as “tough as nails,” despite her kind and soft appearance.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg fought with her fearless intellect, compelling words, and tenacious spirit. When asked when there would be enough women on the court, Ginsburg replied with, “when there are nine.” In regards to how she would like to be remembered, Ginsburg said, “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.” Ginsburg is also quoted as saying that to be a true professional, “you must do something outside of yourself, something that makes life a little better for people less fortunate than you.”
According to NPR, Ginsburg told her granddaughter that her last wish was that “she would not be replaced until a new president is installed.” Though it is hard to explain the gravity of her vacancy on the supreme court, know that the person who takes her seat could be the deciding factor on reproductive rights, LBGTQ+ rights, how we handle climate change, labor rights, immigration laws, and so much more.
Unfortunately, our current president has already made moves to find her replacement. Please consider signing this petition to not fill her seat until after the new president takes office, but most importantly, please exercise your right to vote this November. You can check your voter registration here. Do not lose hope, understand the depth of the situation we are in right now and choose to make your opinion count.
Women like me lead our lives the way we do today because of RBG’s work. As heartbroken as I am to know that one of my true heroes has passed, I know that her legacy will be one that my future daughter learns about in school. I sincerely hope that we do right by her, she deserves nothing less. Rest in power, RBG.