Even before Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was graced with her rap name, #notoriousRBG, she was a fierce litigator who was fighting and demanding women’s rights.
According to CNN, she took her oath of office on August 10, 1993, exactly twenty- four years ago to this day. President Bill Clinton elevated her to the Supreme Court, making her the court’s second female justice, after Sandra Day O’Connor.
Justice Ginsburg has successfully argued five cases before the Supreme Court, on laws and government policies regarding gender stereotypes. She is an advocate for all women, and quite frankly we don’t want to know what the world would be like with out her.
Here are five things that make Justice Ginsburg #notoriousRBG:
1. Her mother was a powerful influence.
Ginsburg’s mother, Celia Bader, had a love for education. Justice Ginsburg disclosed in an interview with the New York Times, that as a child her mother would be disappointed if she didn’t have “a perfect report card.” Ginsburg said that her mother told her, “a story about bringing home a report card with all A’s to her father.” Ginsburg explained that the report card, “didn’t mean anything, [because] she was a girl.”
While Celia Bader graduated from high school at age fifteen, she never go to go to college, as the opportunity was only given to her older brother. Celia Bader made sure her daughter was going to live the life that Celia had always dreamed of. Unfortunately, Celia Bader never got to see her daughter’s success. Bader passed away the day before her daughter’s high school graduation. With out Ginsburg’s mother, RBG wouldn’t be where she is today.
2. Men repeatedly tried to discourage her attempts.
Justice Ginsburg went to Harvard Law where she was one of the nine women in a class of 500. The Dean of Harvard Law invited the nine women to a dinner. According to an interview with the New York Times, the Dean asked each woman, “how do you justify taking a spot from a qualified man?”
Ginsburg claims that she was “embarrassed,” but his rude question didn’t come close to stopping her. She continued at Harvard law and later finished her degree at Columbia where she tied for best in her class.
3. She had a love that was unbeatable.
In an interview for The Washington Post, Ginsburg shared that her husband, “was the first boy [she] knew who cared that [she] had a brain.” While millions of people adore RBG, her husband was always her number one fan. Speaking of Marty Ginsburg, she said, “I had a life partner who thought my work was as important as his, and I think that made all the difference for me.”
The support in the relationship was mutual as Marty Ginsburg told The New York Times in 1993, “I have been supportive of my wife since the beginning of time, and she has been supportive of me. It’s not sacrifice; it’s family.”
The couple attended Harvard Law School together, not even a year after having their daughter, Jane. That same year Marty was diagnosed with cancer, but RBG wouldn’t let her husband fall behind. She sat in on her husband’s classes, wrote his essays and kept him up to date. On top of all this, Ginsburg stayed at the top of her class.
Before Marty passed away he wrote a letter to his wife, it read, “You are the only person I have loved in my life, setting aside, a bit, parents and kids and their kids, and I have admired and loved you almost since the day we first met at Cornell some 56 years ago.”
4.The world for women would be very different with out her.
Ginsburg is a founder of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Women’s Rights Project, and has “successfully tackled laws that treated women as second-class citizens.” The ACLU has taken on hundreds of cases around gender discrimination, and it wouldn’t have happened with out her.
In an article by the New York Times, Janet Benshoof, the president of the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy, said Ginsburg, “is the Thurgood Marshall of gender equality law.” RBG’s main goal has always been to help people and give women equality. When asked why she joined the ACLU, Ginsburg said, “I wanted to be a part of a general human rights agenda . . . [promoting] the equality of all people and the ability to be free”
5.On top of all that, Justice Ginsburg has survived cancer twice
Ginsburg is a woman who knows how to fight. #NotoriousRBG will not let anything stop her, not even cancer. She had colon cancer and then a tumor in her pancreas. In 2014 a stent was placed in her heart. Ginsburg has beat the odds, in more ways than one.
This woman is unbreakable. RBG is someone who has done it all, and then some more. Despite every hardship she faced, she continued to come out on top. She proves to us that hard work, determination, and a kind heart can take you farther than you may think.