Honoring Ruth Bader Ginsburg


©WFU/Ken Bennett

Associate Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Visits WFU by Wake Forest University School of Law is licensed under CC 2.0

Olivia Kinney, Staff Writer, Lead Editor

After performing an incredulous 27 years on the Supreme Court, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away at the age of 87 due to an ongoing battle with pancreatic cancer.

“Thanks to RBG, every female that has a credit card, has a mortgage without a male cosigner, their bank account, and so many other financial items that are needed to be independent needs to thank her. She also championed equality for male’s rights to be viewed as and receive the same benefits as a female caregiver,” Economics teacher Brittany Catalano said.

Appointed in 1993 by President Bill Clinton, Ginsburg fought for an abundance of social issues, including women’s rights, the LGBTQ community, undocumented people, disabled people, voting rights, abortion rights, same-sex marriage, health care, and affirmative action. 

Senior Brandt Trotter believed Ginsburg was one of the strongest fighters in the history of American Government.

 “Nothing stopped her from fighting for the rights of America’s most oppressed. She saw the flaws of our system, whether it be social or economic, and spoke up. We rarely see such a passionate and hard-fighting person in such a high office today, but Ruth was one,” Trotter said.

“When a justice dies it is always sad, especially RBG. My initial reaction was ‘no, no, no’ and to make sure my sister saw the news,” Catalano said. “We then talked as if she was an elderly relative and not just someone in our government. She is one of those larger than life figures that seemed immortal.”

Ginsburg battled and conquered sexism directly.  While attending Harvard and America Law Schools a professor offered her good grades for sexual intercourse, she immediately refused.  Later on, she became the second female law teacher at Rutgers and fought for equivalent compensation.

“She saw an injustice when she went to school and was asked why she should be taking the spot of a man, she was denied employment all because of her lack of a y chromosome and she went about making the world a better place for me, my daughter, and all other women out there,” Catalano said.

As the second female law professor at Rutgers, she experienced unequal pay.  She persisted to ask why a male was being paid more, in which her dean responded by saying he has a wife and two children to support and that she has a husband with a good paying job in New York,  news opinionist Angela Onwuachi-Willig reported. She and her fellow female employees at Rutgers filed an Equal Pay Act complaint and succeeded in winning.

“Ruth Bader knew that her support of women’s rights, racial justice, LGBTQ+ rights, and whatnot would garner her disapproval from many of her colleagues, yet she continued to fight for what’s right,” Trotter said. 

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s last wish was for her legacy to be honored.

“I feel that Ruth Vader’s replacement could be detrimental to the future of women’s, racial and LGBTQ+ rights for years to come. It scares me for the sake of these groups who have been oppressed for so, so long, but it also inspires me to continue fighting,” Trotter said.