How can I not write this week about the prolific soul that was destined to live forever, Ruth Bader Ginsberg. The woman was a giant among men (literally) and to lose her may be to say that GOD needed someone on his side to rule. I have to be honest, and I hope I don't sound that naive, but I don't know much about her. In fact, watching the movie, On The Basis of Sex, was my first introduction to the kind of impact she had. That led me to a google search on who she was and now with her passing, I'm committed to reading an biography on her life to truly understand the person that is RBG.
That aside, it still didn't stop me from saying something and writing this post. I had to. In fact, my soul demanded I say something about what it meant for me to learn from her life (the little I have). So here we go.
I searched over the internet for some of the lesser known facts about RBG and what I found was interesting.
RBG IS MORE FIT THAN YOU
Did you know that Ruth Bader Ginsberg routinely worked out everyday with a personal trainer doing 20 pushups regularly and throwing a 12 pound medicine ball? How crazy is that? I'm sure many of us couldn't do that now and she did it all to classical music because she was the biggest opera fan.
But what stood out most to me was RGB'S ACCEPTANCE SPEECH when she was appointed to the Supreme Court by then President Bill Clinton. As eloquent and paced her delivery was, and the knowledge bombs she dropped, her Thank You to her mother was beautiful. I'll paraphrase it here...
"My mother was the bravest, strongest person I have ever known, who was taken from me much too soon. I pray that I may be all that she would have been had she lived in an age when women could aspire and achieve and daughters are cherished as much as sons."
She studied law at Harvard and Columbia, graduated top of her class, didn't get any offers from any NY law firm, pivoted and became a professor at Rutgers, got back into the courtroom to represent clients being discriminated on the basis of sex, becomes a judge, then gets appointed to the Supreme Court (whew! what a bio).
All that, and in an interview with NPR, when asked if she had any regrets (which she didn't quite answer the question), left us with some great insight. She stated in a conversation she had with Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Conner:
"Suppose we had been born at a time when women were welcomed at the bar as men. Today we'd be retired partners from some law firm. But because that route wasn't open to us, we had to find another way and become Supreme Court Justices"
We had to find another way. If that doesn't motivate you I don't know what does. I will take that and put it in our memory banks for the next time I hit a road block.
Ruth Bader Ginsberg was inspirational to say the least. Despite her views and what side you sit on politically, you'd have to agree that she completely changed the rights of women. The idea of Radical Social Change was set before her feet and standing on the shoulders of her predecessors charged full force into that battle and won.
I'm saddened to hear of her passing, the way I was saddened when I heard the passing of Prince and Kobe Bryant. RBG was an icon because of what she stood for, the life she led with her family and the impact she had on our world.
I hope to have but a sliver of the legacy she leaves for the rest of us.