Ninja Supreme Court Justice: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Has Fun With Fame

May 09, 2018 · 28 comments
Honor senior (Cumberland, Md.)
Old and somewhat senile, she needs to retire, no one is irreplaceable!
DaveD (Wisconsin)
I've seen RBG. A harmless and amusing hagiography.
Max from Mass (Boston)
For so many in this space and elsewhere who admire Justice Ginsburg, but suggest that she should have "sacrificed" by retiring when Obama was president, your calculus is flawed. First, Social Security actuarial data show that the average additional lifespan for 85 year old women is 7.01 years, or at least a year past the end of the Trump aberration. Of course, that number was 10 plus years in the last years of the Obama presidency. Plus, we know of McConnell's destructive ignoring of the Constitution might have led to with any Obama nominee. But, more importantly, that 7.01 year calculation is an average. People who, like Justice Ginsburg, aggressively maintain their physical fitness not only live much longer than the average, but maintain their intellectual fitness as well. So, I'm looking forward to seeing Justice Ginsburg become not only become the first centenarian Supreme Court justice, but the one who writes the majority opinion that saves our democracy by overturning Citizens United.
SdS (Washington, DC)
RGB is a great, one of a kind character on the court. I particularly liked the relationship she shared with the Late Justice Scalia. The two while on opposite sides in many cases found common ground and were lifelong friends. Her words and statement put it best - I am looking forward to seeing the documentary
Paul B. (Takoma Park, MD)
Small quibble: "My Own Words" is an exemplary book and an engaging read, but it's not an autobiography. It's a curated collection of her thoughts from speeches and other sources, and it provides a lot of interesting insight. It was assembled by her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams, who provide context in each chapter. In some ways it's more powerful than an autobiography because it focuses on Justice Ginsburg's work.
Nick (Portland, OR)
Ego and narcissism have infected all branches of government, especially at the top levels. A humble justice would stay out of the limelight.
Max from Mass (Boston)
Stay out of the limelight? You mean like Justice Thomas stays out of the limelight for fear of showing his incompetency? Oh please! Justice Ginsburg is one of the most influential people, not just in the U.S., but in the world. Accomplished people don't find there way that sort of role by being wallflowers.
P Muldoon (Northampton, MA)
So RBG is having some fun with her notoriety! Look at what a class act she is with even that! She makes the law such a noble enterprise when so many others with just a smidgeon of her power dirty it, using it in all sorts of corrupt ways. She shows how power can be in service of truth, justice, and goodness when again, far too many others use power for their own selfish, greedy ends. She brings her intelligence and humanity, beauty and great sense of style, together in ways that we can all admire. Thank God for this woman and her great gift of service to our country's highest court! You rock, RBG!
Milton Lewis (Hamilton Ontario)
Hard to imagine an empty suit like the Donald sharing space and oxygen with the exemplary RBG.A true woman of valor and a role model for all generations.
Jay Forest (New York, NY)
Out of touch, out of place, and out of time, fly over America wishes she would just retire...
sfdphd (San Francisco)
I saw the film at the SF Film Festival and it was excellent. A sold out crowd that stretched around the block of the massive Castro Theater. Lots of lawyers in attendance: groups from law firms, and groups of law students. I'm not in the legal field but appreciated learning the details of her history, winning cases at the Supreme Court and then being asked to serve on the Court. She has earned the respect that she has achieved.
sbnj (NJ)
Justice Ginsburg is much more liberal than I and categorically disagree with her on certain social issues. However, her life, her intellect and -- most of all in this day and age -- her integrity make her a shining example of the best our nation has to offer. I wish her a long and healthy life -- with continued service on the bench -- at least until the threat of a potentially ultra-conservative Supreme Court passes, if not beyond.
T Montoya (ABQ)
She seems like a lovely person but it was selfish to not retire during the Obama years. Reportedly she was confident that a Democrat would follow and she would have more time at a job she loves. Now there is a risk we could end up with a court so far right that John Roberts would appear center-left. Fingers crossed her health carries her for another ten years plus.
I don't understand why a Supreme Court justice would want to be thought of as a celebrity or "beloved." Doesn't she run the risk of being snickered at or viewed as someone who never leaves the stage? Is it all about entertainment?
Phyliss Dalmatian (Wichita, Kansas)
This is an exemplary piece. However, I'm now filled with anticipatory grief. Please stay strong, Madam Justice. You are revered, and loved.
fast/furious (the new world)
Ginsburg is a great justice and I'm grateful to her. But in not stepping down at the beginning of Obama's 2nd term, she has made it likely that Donald Trump will eventually appoint a rightwing reactionary to the seat she holds. I think Ginsburg's love of her newfound celebrity during the Obama years had a deleterious effect on her strategic judgement. Why be determined to remain on the Court in her 80s, having experienced several serious health issues, when the likelihood is that seat will be filled by someone who will vote to overturn everything she's done? The older SCOTUS justices don't take this seriously enough. Everything she has fought for may be overturned - and quickly - in a few years. What a gift it would have been to us if she had given Obama the opportunity to appoint a progessive woman in her 40s to the seat she now holds.
Kate (Philadelphia)
Do you think the same thing has held true for men determined to remain on the Court in their 80s?
DaveD (Wisconsin)
Don't know but that's not the case at hand.
Maggie (Hudson Valley)
Several years ago Justice Ginsberg was attending a Judge's conference in a renowned Hudson Valley mountaintop resort. A friend who works there knew I kept a copy of the Justice's dissent in Bush V Gore on my desk at work and mentioned it to her when she took her horseback riding (yes, horseback riding!). I then received an invitation to attend her talk with the Judges- to my surprise her topic was why the Justices write dissents - and I don't think it was a coincidence Imagine her offering that invite to a total stranger. I will never forget it.
Counter Measures (Old Borough Park, NY)
Our most hallowed institutions are now becoming forms of entertainment! Like reality TV and Dancing With The Stars! I don't know how this is going to play out, but it's got to be troubling!
The Buddy (Astoria, NY)
In an era where the leader of the free world blatantly refuses to divest or keep his business dealings transparent, a Supreme Court Justice basking in a bit of fame from a hyped documentary seems positively harmless.
MJ (Northern California)
I don't think of documentaries as entertainment; rather, they're education.
cynner (The Bubble)
It doesn't sound like you saw the film. If you had, you'd know there were things to be learned about the Court and the impact of one of the justices on history, both legal and cultural. Or are you equating a woman's experience simply as entertainment.
Sipa111 (Seattle)
RGB - Keeping America great
J J Davies (San Ramon California)
WE LOVE YOU RUTH ( And I am proud that you are American )
Blotus (Denver)
Joan P (Chicago)
Has any other Supreme Court justice been the subject of a song cycle? Chicago’s Cedille Records is issuing an album of music sung by Patrice Michaels, “Notorious RBG in Song”, that includes, among other musical tributes to Ginsburg, Ms. Michaels’ song cycle, “The Long View”.
Peter Steinberg (Brooklyn, NY)
Full disclosure, that record label is owned by Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s son. But who cares? The movie car is fantastic. It should be required viewing for all Americans. Go see it.
See also