There is no description of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s monumental life that would sufficiently capture how she changed this country.
As a lawyer, Ginsburg led the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project in the 1970s, participating in hundreds of sex discrimination cases, including dozens that went all the way to the Supreme Court. These efforts established the modern legal prohibitions against sex discrimination and set the foundation for future women’s rights advocacy.
As a Supreme Court justice, Ginsburg became an icon to generations of lawyers and activists, inspired by her fiery defense of women’s rights and the promise of justice for all. To this rising generation of young lawyers and activists, she is the Notorious R.B.G.
The following statement can be attributed to Alison Beyea, executive director of the ACLU of Maine.
“I became a lawyer because of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the attorneys at the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project. My mother worked there, and she would bring me with her to work when she didn’t have childcare. I grew up surrounded by role models of women who were going to court and fiercely advocating for women’s rights and women’s equality when that was still a novel concept.
“Despite decades of advancement, women still have to contend with laws that treat them differently than men. Women still do not have total autonomy over their bodies and reproductive choices. Women are still paid less than men for the same work – and these disparities are even greater for women of color. Women are the fastest growing incarcerated population in Maine, and in the nation. These efforts to legally circumscribe women are taken to keep them from fully participating in their social and political lives.
“There is so much work left to do to ensure full equality for all women and people of all genders. We take inspiration from Justice Ginsburg’s clear vision and her relentless drive. May we be as ceaseless in the fight for more equality.”