opinion: RBG’s Fight for Women’s Rights Makes Way for Conservative, Pro-Life Judge
Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second woman to be appointed to the Supreme Court, died Sept. 18, 2020 after battling metastic pancreatic cancer. She was 87 years old. While she has done much to pioneer women’s rights in government, she was also an advocate for abortion and keeping religion out of government.
Ginsburg, or “the Notorious RBG” as she came to be called, was born in Brooklyn, New York on March 15, 1933. She attended Harvard Law before becoming the director of the Women’s Rights Project of the American Civil Liberties Union in the 1970s.
In the 1980s, President Jimmy Carter named her to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. On June 14, 19https://www.history.com/topics/womens-history/ruth-bader-ginsburg93, President Bill Clinton nominated her to the Supreme Court to fill the seat formerly held by Byron White. Ginsburg became the second woman and the first Jew named to the Supreme Court.
Despite their differences on pretty much everything, Ginsburg became close friends with fellow Justice Antonin Scalia before his death in 2016. The two met in the D.C. Court of Appeals in the 1980s and quickly bonded over their love of the opera and wine. Both of the justices had birthdays in March, and Scalia would bring her roses on her birthday.
Scalia was described as a “strict constitutionalist,” while Ginsburg was known for her liberal leanings. Their convictions didn’t keep them from being friends, however. Scalia said of his friendship with Ginsburg, “Call us the odd couple. She likes opera, and she’s a very nice person. What’s not to like? Except her views on the law.”
Ginsburg echoed his sentiments after his death, saying, “We were best buddies.”
Ginsburg served on the Court for a total of 27 years. During that time she became known for various decisions that were brought before the court.
One of those was the Social Security Act, where Ginsburg advocated for a newly-widowed father who wasn’t given the same aid as a widow in the same situation. While this was a case that I believe RBG made a sound decision, I don’t agree on most of her views.
When Burwell v Hobby Lobby Stores came before the Supreme Court, Ginsburg was outspoken about her stance. She believed Hobby Lobby needed to provide employees with contraceptives in their store healthcare program per the 2010 Affordable Care Act (also known as ObamaCare). Hobby Lobby pushed against providing birth control, saying it violated their religious beliefs.
Additionally, Ginsburg was staunchly pro-abortion. She not only believed that the government should fund abortion, but also stated that abortion was a woman’s “fundamental right.”
She didn’t think men should have an opinion on abortion decisions because they aren’t the ones who have to carry the child and was confident about the future of abortion in the United States. She said, “We will never see a day when women of means are not able to get a safe abortion in this country.”
Following her death, calls to fill the seat were plastered across various social media channels. Despite these calls, there were some who ridiculed the thought of having Ginsburg’s seat filled so quickly. Many said it was her last wish that her seat not be filled until another president was in office.
On Sept. 26, President Trump announced that he had chosen Amy Coney Barrett as a potential replacement in the Supreme Court. If successfully confirmed, Barrett will be the youngest person ever to join the Supreme Court at the age of 48. She also has seven children, including two adopted from Haiti, and would be the first justice with children still in school.
Barrett is different from Ginsburg in nearly every way, but her stances on faith and life are exactly what our country needs during this pivotal time in history.
While there are reports saying that Barrett will not stand up for women like RBG did, I strongly disagree. Not only do I believe that Barrett will stand for women alive today, but I believe she will also fight for future women. Millions of future women (and men) have their futures hanging in the balance due to abortion.
The New York Times described Barrett as a “home run by conservative Christians and anti-abortion activists.” There are certainly many who are celebrating President Trump’s choice to pick Barrett as his Supreme Court nominee. Many are hoping she could be the tipping point to help bring an end to Roe v. Wade and help secure the futures of millions of babies who could be aborted in the years to come.
This country needs a judge that not only stands up for the rights of people who are already alive, but those who are the most vulnerable among us. God created each and every one of us with a plan and purpose in mind, and these babies deserve to live out their God-given calling on their lives.
Bailey Duran is the Opinion Editor. Follow her on Twitter at @duran_bailey.