Ruth Bader Ginsburg

UChicago-Ruth-Bader-Ginsberg-RBG

Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Sadly, we just lost one of the greatest female jurists of our time, if not all times.

Many of my supporters have asked me to make a statement about what RBG meant to me. I humbly do so, otherwise not liking the recent trend of many major established organizations and interests to publicly state support for causes and directions that they have demonstrably not actually supported in recent months even when they had an easy and highly warranted chance to do so. This calls into question their intent behind their statements. Talk is cheap! Action matters!

To me, RBG stands for the courage to do the right thing for the often disfavored segments and people of society. Think gender equity, of course, but also LGBT rights, race, ethnicity, birth control, voting rights, and so much more; issues many of which have now been resolved in the legally, societally, and humanely correct way.

While some people can disagree on some legal issues, I truly admire RBG for the fact that despite criticism, she was known to be “tough as nails.” She unwaveringly did what she believed was right despite resistance. Importantly, she did so while remaining calm, professional, compassionate, and respectful to all. Her friendship with Scalia, a known conservative, was well known. We should all strive to be kind like that and to stand behind our friends. Trying to tear down others is easy. Lifting up each other is harder, but much better for society!

Above all, RBG stands to me for her support of women’s rights and women’s success in the workplace. She is famous for having commented, “I ask for no favor for my sex. All I ask of our brethren is that they take their feet off our necks” citing feminist and abolitionist Sarah Grimké). In 2020, I would personally take that further. I do not ask for “favors,” but I do ask for more progress for women and other minority members in the workplace and beyond. I ask of my brothers and sisters (who can be the worst detractors of other women) that they not only take the feet off our necks, but that they support open, honest, and professional dialogue and efforts for the improvement of not only our own lives, but those of future generations and society. Female voices in government matter! Diversity matters! Courage matters! RBG proved this a long time ago. We should still heed her advice.

RIP.