The Notorious RBG; Let’s Talk Politics & Gender Equality

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Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG), champion of Gender Equality, passed away last week at age 87. Though being known in recent years for her iconic fashion style, inspiring workout sessions, and infamous nickname, RBG spent her career as a pioneering legal mind and ferocious defender of gender equality. Despite graduating top of her class at Columbia Law School, she struggled to find a job at a law firm. She did have all three strikes — being a woman, a mother Jewish. G-d bless the 60s.

Oh, how times have changed… Ironically, some would say that it was RBG herself that forged the path for equal treatment of sexes in order to rectify the very treatment she received and ensure justice for all future women. Her collars were her weapon. She used them to expand, ever so slowly and deliberately, in the same way she did the law, the landscape of our own understanding. She founded the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project and fought for changes such as giving women the right to open a bank account, have credit cards, and a mortgage without a man’s signature, was nominated by President Bill Clinton and became the second woman appointed to the Supreme Court, advocated for the right to access healthcare including birth control and defended a woman’s right to obtain an abortion. If that’s not enough, she also voted in favor of same-sex marriage, pushed for everyone’s right to vote, supported the rights of those with disabilities.

Days before she died, RBG shared her “most fervent wish… that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed”. President Trump’s mere accusation that this was a false statement shows that such niceties likely will not be afforded, particularly by an administration that has made the shredding of norms and traditions just another day at the office.

If given the opportunity, President Trump has vowed to nominate a woman to fill the US Supreme Court vacancy before the election (arguably a smart political move and great distraction from his handling of the coronavirus pandemic). It is his Constitutional right to nominate the next Justice, as it was President Obama’s right despite being blocked in a similar situation. Difference being that President Trump has a majority in the Senate. Regardless, does simply selecting another woman really ensure justice and equality remain at the forefront of the Court’s consideration? One thing is for sure, there will only ever be one Ruth Badass Ginsberg — RIP.

Lauren Thurin,

According to Justice Ginsburg’s religion, the Jewish tradition, a person who dies on Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year), which began the day of her passing, is a tzaddik, a person of great righteousness.

After Ginsburg’s death was reported Friday evening, ActBlue, a major online fundraising hub for Democrats, raised $30 million in 12 hours, shattering records.

The momentous movie On the Basis of Sex and documentary RBG are necessities. Both chronicle the career of the U.S. Supreme Court Justice, spanning several decades, and how she developed a legal legacy while becoming a pop culture icon.

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