My wife didn’t think it would happen like this. For many, this was the loss of a hero, an icon, and a champion.
She’s been sewing face coverings as a side project for her friends and family, mostly because she wanted an RBG mask so badly and couldn’t find one anywhere online. She’s an attorney with a nonprofit that provides free legal help for low-income and elderly Iowans. “Justice Ginsberg’s lifetime of work spoke to my soul,” she remarked Friday night, after learning of the 87-year-old’s passing.

The death of Ginsburg, the second woman to sit on the Supreme Court, brought on a very particular kind of grief for many women. To be clear, Ginsburg’s work advanced the interests of men, minorities, and voters as well, but as the publicly-appointed elder stateswoman of feminism, her role in the advancement of the American woman will be honored for decades to come.

She was a pioneer for gender equality. Her vision and brilliance earned this place in history books and on the honor roll of American civil rights heroes.

While Ginsburg’s accomplishments are many (you can read about them in detail here, here, and here), I’d like to take a moment to share some of the late Justice’s wit, through her own words:

On Women, Leadership, and Legacy

  • “When I’m sometimes asked ‘When will there be enough [women on the Supreme Court]?’ and my answer is: ‘When there are nine.’ People are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”
  • “Women will have achieved true equality when men share with them the responsibility of bringing up the next generation.”
  • “Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
  • “Dissents speak to a future age. It’s not simply to say, ‘My colleagues are wrong and I would do it this way.’ But the greatest dissents do become court opinions and gradually over time their views become the dominant view. So that’s the dissenter’s hope: that they are writing not for today, but for tomorrow.”
  • “[I would like to be remembered as someone] who used whatever talent she had to do her work to the very best of her ability. And to help repair tears in her society, to make things a little better through the use of whatever ability she has. To do something, as my colleague David Souter would say, outside myself. Because I’ve gotten much more satisfaction for the things that I’ve done for which I was not paid.”