The Notorious Ruth Bader Ginsburg

On Friday, The 18th of Septemberber, the world bid farewell to Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The multiplicity and the essence of the roles she played as a mother, a woman, a lawyer and a legal luminary will be tarnished if attempted to put on paper. Her memory lies in her legacy, one of sailing and assailing through hardships in the form of a woman, a mother, and a Jew in a world filled with male collars and robes, in her staunch persona, in her unwavering character, judgments, and dissents which often were met with contention from a conservative US Supreme Court.

A New Yorker by birth, Ginsburg was born in Brooklyn to Jewish parents and against inferable odds, attended Harvard Law School, graduating with a law degree from Columbia University in 1959, and tied for the top rank in her class. She clerked for Judge Edmund Palmieri after her law professor, Gerald Gunther, “threatened to never recommend a Columbia graduate again if Palmieri rejected her.” From the inception of her career, she had premier experience of clerking with a Judge of high standing along with experience of the vicissitudes (read: open misogyny) of the world of Lady Justice.

She was the second female US Supreme court judge, taking oath during the Clinton Administration and was known for her unwavering discipline and her ability to ask tough, contentious questions in a court that is known for its euphemisms. Her comments often divided the court on the convoluted lines of ideology. One of her last sharp and unaltered dissents was on a case dealing with the matter of contraception under the ACA where she left no stone unturned to condemn the majority for leaving potentially half a million women to “fend for themselves.”

Ginsburg’s work legacy

Her legal legacy stands apart in her defense of the general populace and on crucial social issues of disability, women’s rights, pay parity to state a few, and became a symbol of the Liberal wing of the Court and a paragon of character for future women leaders in her later years.

She had a particular quirk of never being late to hearings, nearly attending all of them and will be remembered by the billow of a black robe, which carried the ideals of equality and social justice on the steps of the Supreme Court.

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