On September 18 (Friday) local time in the United States, the United States Supreme Court announced the death of Justice Ruth Bud Ginsberg throughout the year 87 years old. In an external statement, the US Supreme Court stated: “Due to complications caused by pancreatic cancer, Justice Ruth Budd Ginsberg died tonight at her home in Washington, D.C., and her family stayed with her.”

The outside world is more concerned about who will replace her. EarlyIn 2019, many foreign media reported on it fromThe Court of Appeals for the Seventh CircuitAmy Connie Barrett (Amy ConeyBarrett), the future will Take overRuth Bud Ginsberg. And the replacement candidate is specially reserved by Trump for the seat, and can compulsorily complete the nomination confirmation and help canvass votes in the next presidential election.

This article was first published on March 14, 2019, and is reposted today, hoping to help you understand the second female leader in the history of the U.S. Supreme Court judge. The original text comes from the WeChat official account:See ideal (ID: ikanlixiang). Head picture from: Visual China

Who is RBG?

1. She is Ruth Bader Ginsburg(Ruth Bader Ginsburg), and she is affectionately called RBG.

2. She is a Jewish girl born in Brooklyn with excellent grades. She was admitted to Harvard Law School and became the first woman to earn tenure at Columbia University after graduation.

3. She is a gold medal feminist lawyer. In 1973, RBG served as the lead litigation attorney for the Women’s Rights Program of the American Freedom League. In the next 10 years, she conducted a series of landmark defenses in the Supreme Court.

4. She is the Justice of the Supreme Court. In 1993, RBG was nominated by President Clinton as Justice of the Supreme Court (Supreme Court). She is the successor of Sandra Day O’Connor The second female justice after span class=”text-remarks” label=”note”>(Sandra Day O’Connar).

5. She is the most popular old man on social networksMrs. People are keen to imitate her dress, make her emoticons, buy her accessories…

6. She is the most punk old lady. I haven’t retired at the age of 85. I go to work every day and keep working out.

7. She has an enviable love. Her husband Martin laughed and called himself the “first husband”. In that era when men believed that their wives should take care of the family, Martin had always supported RBG’s career during his lifetime. He once said: “I think I have done the most The most important thing is to help Ruth achieve her current career.”

8. She is called “notorious” (The Notorious RBG), this is how fans pay tribute to her: because she always An angry objection was issued when the Supreme Court made a ridiculous verdict.

“What would be more disgusting than an old woman? But everyone can’t wait to remember every word the old woman said.” In the documentary about her Douban score 9.0 In “RBG”, a young girl said of her.

This one is worshipped by countless peopleWho is the RBG?

Next, let us look back at her life through some truly historical cases.

1. Let a group of men see what is real sexism

Frontiero vs Richardson(1973)

Frontiero, now with white hair, wearing a checkered shirt, sitting on the sofa, recalls the day more than 40 years ago.

The United States in the 1970s was a period when the U.S. Air Force was enrolling women. Inspiring sentences were often written in advertising slogans:

“Who said that women should be restricted to a three-point line of life, don’t you have no choice as a woman? Join the U.S. Air Force and you can also explore the world!”

At that time, Frontiero, who had just graduated from university, was eager to achieve economic independence, so he joined the US Air Force. In addition to finding a job, she has good news: marrying her husband.

New job, new life, everything is brand new to Frontiero in his early twenties.

Frontiero in his youth

However, the reality is not as exciting as the advertisement says. Soon after joining the job, Frontiero discovered an unfair phenomenon: male colleagues around, as long as they get married, they can get housing allowance. And she cannot get this allowance, just because of her gender.

After learning this news, the naive Frontiero thought “it was just a mistake made by the administrator”, but when she walked into the finance room, she received a blow:

“You have been lucky enough to have the opportunity to join the army. The Air Force can accept you to serve, you should feel lucky.” The financial officer said coldly.

Frontiero found a lawyer. The lawyer pointed out the problem sharply: This is not an administrative error, but a legal error. At that time, there were hundreds of provisions in the US state and federal laws with serious gender discrimination.:

Legal regulations that took effect in 1970:

Employers in most states can legally dismiss pregnant women for pregnancy.

The bank requires womento get their husband’s signature when applying for credit.

In society, it is generally believed that men are the breadwinners, and women are just saving pocket money if they participate in work. To change all of this, it must be corrected through litigation.

At the time, RBG worked as a feminist lawyer in the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and she accepted the case without hesitation. In her view, the Frontiero case can promote legal changes because she represents the dilemma faced by women across the United States.

The court session is in the afternoon. This is not only an important day in the life of the young girl Frontiero, but also an important day in the life of RBG-because this time, it is her first defense in the Supreme Court. Because of being too nervous, RBG did not eat lunch at noon. She recalled that the Supreme Court was solemn and high-status, but what impressed her most was the portraits on the wall: they were oil paintings of American judicial leaders. They came from different eras, but they had one thing in common-they were all men.

“I was very nervous, but when I looked up and looked at the judges, I thought that I have an impatient audience.”

RBG used sharp and calm language to sort out the various languages ​​used in the United States about women being treated differently since the founding of the nation: “Husband is the master of the family”, “Women must obey him unconditionally.” She told the court. The male members explained precisely, what it is like to be a “second-class citizen”——

“I realized that I was speaking to men, and they didn’t realize the existence of discrimination based on gender. My strategy is to make them understand that this is real Discrimination.”

In the end, Frontiero received a call from the reporter at home and won. Frontiero received her protection money, and RBG also won the first lawsuit in her life.

2. What about gender discrimination against men?

Weinberger v Wiesenfeld(1975)

When it comes to gender discrimination, most people think it is discrimination against women. What we often overlook is that men are also victims of gender discrimination.

1975 was a year full of twists and turns for Stephen Wiesenfeld(Steven Wiesenfeld). His wife unfortunately died of dystocia, but the child survived. He had to quit his job because he had to take care of the children alone, and his financial resources became a problem.

He went to the government to apply for a single-parent family security fund, but was rejected by the staff because it was “mother’s compensation”-in normal times, widows automatically get this benefit, but widowers do not, because society is common I believe that only women need to take care of the family, and there is no such thing as a “housekeeper” like Stephen.

RBG took this case decisively and it is everywhere in societyIn gender discrimination, the victims are never only women, but everyone in the society.

“When we walked into the court, she asked me to sit at the same table with her. She seemed to have a male face appear in front of the stage. The judges felt more empathetic.” Stephen recalled, “Very Smart strategy”.

The result of the lawsuit was heard by RBG from the car radio. At the time she was driving to work at Columbia University: “My first reaction was to control my excitement, or I would have a car accident.” Another friend of her revealed that she won the case because , I cried.

The lawsuit was won, and the “homeowner” received a guarantee.

“I think that men and women will work together to make this world a better place.” “It is not the liberation of women, but the liberation of everyone.”

The once young novice father, now gray-haired, showed a smile like this when he talked about the victory over 40 years ago.

Steven Wiesenfeld

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3. Two defenses nearly 40 years apart: what does childbearing mean to women?

Struck v. Secretary of Defense(1970)

Gonzales v. Carhart(2007)

These are two gamesCases spanning nearly 40 years. The identity of RBG has also gone from being a litigator at the time to being a judge of the Supreme Court.

Time goes back to 1970. Susan Scolak (Susan Struck) is an Air Force nurse. She is a brave and work-loving woman who volunteered to sign up to participate in the Vietnam War.

That year, Scolak became pregnant. However, the Air Force coldly gave her two choices: either resign or have an abortion.

This condition makes Skolak extremely painful, because on the one hand, she is a Catholic and is unwilling to have an abortion for religious reasons; on the other hand, she also loves her job and is unwilling to resign. She wanted to compromise and asked the troops: After she gave birth to her child, would it be okay for others to adopt it? Still rejected.

Faced with a dilemma, Scolak found the American Civil Rights League. RBG, who was acting as a litigator at the time, took the case without hesitation. She said in her defense:

“Among the various obstacles that hinder women from pursuing equal rights, the differential treatment caused by women’s unique fertility is the first to bear the brunt. Until recently, jurists believed that any discrimination against pregnant women and mothers is actually ‘ For their good’.”

The opposing lawyer saw the situation unfavorable and decided to compromise: So, the army cancelled the rule to dismiss pregnant women. This case directly promoted the development of women’s reproductive rights. In October 1978, Congress passed the Anti-Pregnancy Discrimination Act.

According to a reporter’s visit in 2014, the Ms. Scolak is now living in Arizona with “4 dogs, 8 cats, 9 chicks, 1 rooster, and 1 horse.” together.

However, more than 30 years later, RBG put on the uniform of a Supreme Court justice. From litigation lawyer to justice, RBG once again faced the issue of abortion rights in the United States with a new identity.

It was the peak of the anti-abortion movement. In 2003, President Bush Jr. wrote the ban on “partial childbirth abortion” into a federal law. The ban was passed by the Supreme Court by a margin of 5 to 4, and the reasons were full of discrimination. : “Protect capricious women, lest they regret their decisions, and protect them from the deception of their lives.” “Women who have had an abortion will regret their decisions, and they will suffer from severe depression and lose confidence.” .

In RBG’s view, this is a retrogression of the law, and she once again objected:

Whether women can fully develop their personal potential is closely related to “whether they can independently determine their own birth plans.” Therefore, the law does not allow excessive restrictions on women’s abortion rights. This is not only to protect women’s right to privacy, but also to protect women’s autonomy. This autonomy gives women the right to freely determine the path of their lives and thus enjoy equal civil rights with men.

These two cases spanning nearly 40 years reflect RBG’s understanding of reproductive rights: true reproductive freedom-not only the right to have children, but also the right to not have children.

In today’s Chinese society, this topic is still not outdated. Under the policy of encouraging childbirth, the government “encourages birth”, restricts women’s right to terminate pregnancy, and denies women’s physical autonomy; on the other hand, society’s discrimination against pregnant women in the workplace has not decreased, and has imposed numerous restrictions on their career development.

4. Can women not go to military school?

United States v Virginia(1996)

In the documentary, the 85-year-old RBG stared at a photo on the cabinet. As usual, her expression was still serious and calm, making it impossible to guess what she was thinking.

In this group photo, RBG stands in the middle, surrounded by a group of women in uniforms. Behind this photo, there is an exciting story-the woman in the photo, because of RBG, entered the coveted Virginia Military Academy.

Virginia Military Academy(VMI, Virginia Military Institute) is a century-old military academy with strict disciplines, harsh conditions and training Many outstanding officers came out. However, it is also a boys’ school.

In 1996, a high school girl wanted to go to VMI, but was rejected by the school because she only recruited boys. She therefore filed a lawsuit against Virginia, arguing that this admissions rule violates the constitutional principle of equality between men and women.

The Virginia Military Academy, which only recruited boys at the time

At the time, the opposing lawyer had long heard of Judge Ginsberg. By the 1990s, American society had already experienced many cases of gender discrimination. At this time, it was said that “women’s duty is to stay at home. The argument of “suitable to join the army” is out of fashion. The opposing lawyer came up with a more gentle defense strategy, which is still common “protective discrimination” today:

The Virginia Military Academy claims that enrolling female cadets will destroy its teaching goal, because this goal includes the use of “strike training methods” to train cadets, which is too harsh and not suitable for training women.

LearnThe college set up a botched imitation program in its sister school and called it the “Virginia Women’s Leadership Academy”. However, this college instilled gentle and feminine values.

“A military academy only admits men. It teaches the’male’ values ​​that only men can learn, and it clearly states that men can withstand the harsh training and achieve success.” Federal Assistant Deputy Attorney General Paul Bender is debating Said in.

As RBG has repeatedly repeated in his career: “Women seem to be taken care of on a high platform, but when you look closely, they are locked in a cage disguised as a high platform.”

This is the first case concerning women’s rights that RBG has taken over since assuming the post of Supreme Court Justice. The case was won and RBG was given the opportunity to write a judgment:

“A high school student wants to go to this military school. This case is not only about VMI, but also about the whole concept. You can’t exclude women just because of gender.”

Now, the girls in the photo have become scientists and engineers after VMI training. In the end, they are all adapted to work at VMI.

Ginsberg understands, “Anything that looks like a special treatment for women will eventually restrict them in turn.”

5. The moment of dissent: As a woman, does the salary get half?

Ledbetter v Goodyear(2006)

The experience of serving as a justice has not always been so smooth. When faced with the other eight justices who have different parties and opinions from her, RBG’s liberal camp often loses.

Losing does not mean the end of the discussion. In U.S. litigation cases, the main opinion will be given to the judgment result, and those judges who disagree with the judgment will raise dissent.(dissenting opinion).

Although the current judgment cannot be changed, it is considered to be a suggestive source of law.(persuasive authority), when the judgment is later disputed or overturned, it can be used for reference by other judges. In some cases, it was these dissenting opinions that promoted changes in the law.

RBG is one of the Supreme Court justices with the most dissent.

The neckwear that RBG often wears when expressing objections

One day in 2006, Lily (Lily Ledbetter) who worked at the tire company received a mysterious note in the office: She read the names of three male colleagues in the same position, and a string of numbers—their wages.

Lily took a closer look and found that the salaries of male colleagues were 40% higher than hers.

At that time, it was the 13th year that RBG was a Supreme Court justice. After another female judge, O’Connor, retired, the liberals lost a possible supporter, the conservative Alito who was friendly to the company’s interests Able to write a verdict.

The verdict stated: Lily was indeed discriminated against, but because she did not file a lawsuit on time, the litigation period has now passed, so the claim will not be considered.

Ginsberg was the only female justice at the time, and she believed that this sentence was simply to avoid the problem. So, on the day of the trial, she bluntly read out her dissent:

Most justices in this court do not understand or care about the little-known pay discrimination that women may suffer in the workplace. Today, it is the turn of the Congress to change this status quo. Congress should correct the mistakes made by this court in this case.

This sharp dissent directly caused a sensation in American society. Three years later, the federal law was indeed changed because of her objections.

In 2009, President Obama came to power, and within 10 days of his inauguration, he signed and passed the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act. At the signing site, Lily stood proudly beside President Obama.