The Washington Post, September 2020, Ginsburg’s vision led us to a better America. We can do the same.
Justice Ginsburg’s legacy reveals the time she spent serving the nation and broadening the circle of inclusion. Justice Ginsburg is known for her work advancing women’s rights. Ginsburg’s legacy also extends to her advocacy for equal citizenship that extends to men, racial minorities, people with disabilities, and workers.
Ginsburg introduced herself as “a Brooklynite, born and bred — a first-generation American on my father’s side, barely second-generation on my mother’s.” “What has become of me could happen only in America,” she said, reflecting on her modest upbringing by parents who lacked the means to attend college. “Like so many others, I owe so much to the entry this nation afforded to people yearning to breathe free.”
Throughout her life, Ginsburg repaid that faith by serving our nation and widening its circle of inclusion. She is best known for her work advancing women’s rights. But that work was part of a more powerful whole, a vision of equal citizenship that extended to men, racial minorities, people with disabilities and workers.
Her successes as founding director of the ACLU Women’s Rights Project are memorialized in case law, as is her signature accomplishment on the bench: her 1996 opinion declaring unconstitutional the Virginia Military Institute’s refusal to admit women. “Generalizations about ‘the way women are,’?” Ginsburg wrote, cannot be used “to create or perpetuate the legal, social, and economic inferiority of women.”