Ruth Bader Ginsburg (born March 15, 1933 – September 18, 2020) was an American lawyer and jurist who was an Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.
After graduating from Cornell University, Ginsburg started law school at Harvard, before transferring to Columbia Law School. She graduated tied for first in her class and went on to become a courtroom advocate for the fair treatment of women.
In 1972, Ginsburg co-founded the Women’s Rights Project at the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and a year later, became the Project’s general counsel. By 1974, the Women’s Right’s Project participated in more than 300 gender discrimination cases.
Also, during this time, Ginsburg had argued six landmark cases on gender equality before the Supreme Court and won five of them. It was this work which led to the end of gender discrimination in many areas of the law.
In 1980 President Jimmy Carter appointed Ginsburg to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. She served there until 1993, when she became second woman ever to serve on the Supreme Court after being appointed by President Bill Clinton.
Throughout the years, Ginsburg became a progressive and feminist hero to many, due to her increasing outspokenness. Many people also admired her for her work ethic, after attending work throughout her chemotherapy treatment and also the day after her husband, Martin Ginsburg, passed away in 2010. She was the fourth-oldest serving Supreme Court Justice, up until her death on 18th September 2020 at age 87.
Below, we take a look at some of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s most famous quotes:
“Reading is the key that opens doors to many good things in life. Reading shaped my dreams, and more reading helped me make my dreams come true.”
“I – try to teach through my opinions, through my speeches, how wrong it is to judge people on the basis of what they look like, color of their skin, whether they’re men or women.”
“If you’re a boy, and you like teaching, you like nursing, you would like to have a doll, that’s okay… we should each be free to develop our own talents, whatever they may be and not be held back by artificial barriers.”
“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
“You can’t have it all, all at once. Who — man or woman — has it all, all at once? Over my lifespan, I think I have had it all. But in different periods of time, things were rough.”
“No one who is in business for profit can foist his or her beliefs on a workforce that includes many people who do not share those beliefs.”
“Just think how you would like the women in your family to be treated, particularly your daughters. And when you see men behaving in ways they should not, you should tell them this is improper behavior.”
“We should not be held back from pursuing our full talents, from contributing what we could contribute to the society, because we fit into a certain mold ― because we belong to a group that historically has been the object of discrimination.”
“Real change, enduring change, happens one step at a time.”
“A gender line…helps to keep women not on a pedestal, but in a cage.”
“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.”