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Ruth Bader Ginsburg The Last Interview

2020, Melville House Publishing

Hello readers, as you can see I'm not exactly up to date. I would have liked to published this Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG) post in a more timely manner right after she passed away in September 2020, may she rest in peace. Better late than never.

Even just a quick refresher look through the book reminds me how much I liked it. I recommend these interviews if you're interested in equal rights, the law, politics, friendship, or just catching up with RBG over her lifetime.

The collection contains one of her first interviews, from 1972 when she was hired by Columbia Law School, her last, with Bill Moyers in February 2020, and five in between which include advice to high school students interested in the law, discussions of her famous legal battles, her family and religious life, and her friendship with Justice Antonin Scalia, her polar opposite on the Supreme Court.

I just flipped through the book again, and it turns out I've only folded down one page. (That usually means the reading was so good I forgot to mark the pages!) In a discussion of the fight for gender equality, RGB mentions Nancy Drew as one of the only sources of inspiration when she was a girl. The Nancy Drew Mystery Stories (1930-2003) is a book series about a young woman detective; I was an avid fan. While fact-checking just now I was surprised to learn that in the French version Nancy Drew was called Alice Roy. Interesting...probably too hard to say the r, it would sound like Dwoo.)

To get back to the point...RBG quotes another young woman who inspired her:

One of the many questions that have often bothered me is why women have been, and still are, thought to be so inferior to men. It's easy to say it's unfair, but that's not enough for me; I'd really like to know the reason for this great injustice. Men presumably dominated women from the very beginning because of their greater physical strength. It's men who earn a living, beget children and do as they please. Until recently, women silently went along with this, which was stupid, since the longer it's kept up, the more deeply entrenched it becomes. Fortunately, education, work and progress have opened women's eyes. In many countries they've been granted equal rights; many people, mainly women, but also men, now realize how wrong it was to tolerate this state of affairs for so long.

Who do you think is the writer?

The writer is Anne Frank, age 15, in one of her last diary entries. RBG says, "Isn't it amazing that a child would write that?"

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