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On September 18, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, one of the country’s most prominent advocates for women’s rights, passed away in Washington, D.C. after a battle with pancreatic cancer. This was a tremendous loss for not only women, but all American citizens who benefit from women’s rights. Here is a list of three groundbreaking achievements put in place by Ginsburg during her life: 

Accomplished many firsts for women in education 

Ginsburg was the first person to ever write for Harvard and Columbia Law Review and she also attended Cornell, Harvard Law School, and Columbia for her doctorate degree. Despite her credentials and higher education, Ginsburg struggled to find a high-paying job. When speaking about this, she remarked, “I struck out on three grounds, I was Jewish, a woman and a mother. The first raised one eyebrow; the second, two; the third made me indubitably inadmissible.” After becoming the first woman to work as a law professor at Rutgers University, she filed an Equal Pay Act complaint with several other female colleagues and ended up winning the case. Later, in 1972, she worked at Columbia Law School as their first female professor. 

Co-founded the first law journal on women’s rights and the Women’s Rights Project at ACLU 

Also in 1972, the Women’s Rights Project was founded to prevent discrimination on the basis of sex, something that Ginsburg had experienced firsthand all her life. At first, she took small measures to promote gender equality in the workplace, but was able to grow in her platform as the years went on. 

Became the second woman to ever serve in the U.S. Supreme Court

In 1993, Bill Clinton nominated Ginsburg as the second of four female justices to ever be in the Court in its 212 year history. She was also the first Jewish person to ever serve in the Court. 

Before Ginsburg’s Court involvement, women could be excluded from state-funded schools, couldn’t sign a mortgage or have a bank account without a male co-signer, and could be fired from a job if found to be pregnant. She also pushed for LGBTQ+ rights and became the first Court justice to officiate a same-sex wedding. 

RBG left behind a legacy for all women that we must continue to carry on even after her death. So, in the upcoming election, make sure you’re voting in favor of women’s equality, and encouraging others to do so. We still have a long way to go and much progress to make. In the words of RBG, “Women belong in all places where decisions are being made.” Let’s make this a known truth, not only for the next four years but for the rest of history.

Nina Benich

Xavier '24

Nina is a first-year English and Advertising double major from Indianapolis, Indiana. She also writes for Xavier Newswire, and in her free time can be found listening to Harry Styles, babysitting her roommate, or petting someone's dog.
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