But underneath this cleaned up image of inspiration is her oft-ignored legacy that is defined by violence against Indigenous people. Ginsburg is another cog in the capitalist system of the United States that was built on genocide and enslavement, and an enemy of the Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island.
“My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new president is installed.” — The dying wish of Ruth Bader Ginsburg ’54
In confirming Justice Amy Coney Barrett, Senate Republicans have essentially said, “Whatever.”
Watching the confirmation on Oct. 26, as Democrats had all but given up on fighting the inevitable, I could feel a sense of helplessness creeping. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, aware that there was nothing left to do, said that Republicans would regret their actions “for a lot longer than they think.” He called the confirmation one of the Senate’s “darkest days.” All this bleak rhetoric left me feeling the same way I felt the night Ginsburg died: deeply saddened, yet powerless to change the outcome.
No matter how blatant the hypocrisy was, Republicans insisted that they could find a justification for their actions. Senator Ted Cruz recited esoteric court confirmations from the 1800’s, shamelessly plugging his new book. Senator Lindsey Graham, declaring he wouldn’t seek a confirmation in an election year, and urging the nation to “hold the tape,” seemed unwilling to be held to his own standard.
“Throughout her career, Ginsburg has used the law to advance ethical and philosophical principles of equality and human rights as basic tenets of the USA. Her contributions have shaped our way of life and way of thinking and have demonstrated to the world the importance of the rule of law in disabling discrimination,” the group stated.
The specially prepared brew, named When There Are Nine, honors Ginsburg’s famed declaration from an event at Georgetown Law School that there will be enough women on the Supreme Court “when there are nine.”
At Bailey Hall, Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor recalled the culture shock of arriving at Princeton as an undergraduate and said she had been determined to “hold on to who I was” when she joined the nation’s highest court. She also said she preferred bourbon over beer.