Ruth Bader Ginsburg- Women’s Rights

Ruth Bader Ginsburg- Womens Rights

Stephanie Medrano

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Supreme Court Justice and co-founder of the Women’s Rights Project at the ACLU passed away on September  18, 2020 due to complications of metastatic pancreas cancer.  What made this so sad for me is that she did so many things for women and women’s rights and now she could possibly be replaced by someone chosen by trump which will only set us back.

Ruth was one of only nine women at Harvard Law School in 1956 and her and her female classmates were asked why the were taking up seats that should be filled by men which honed her feminist instincts.

Pregnancy discrimination cases were a key part of WRP’s agenda and although they had setbacks  it ended in the passage of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act in 1978, an amendment to Title VII that established that pregnancy discrimination in the workplace is unlawful sex discrimination.

In the Reed v Reed a 1971 case which Ginsburg wrote plaintiff’s  brief. A minor, Richard Lynn Reed,  died and his mother wanted to be designated as administrator of his estate. Sally and her husband, Cecil Reed, had separated. Despite Sally filing a petition first, Cecil’s application was automatically approved because of an Idaho statute that stated that “males must be preferred to females” when there was more than one qualified person available to administer someone’s estate. Ginsburg argued that this violated the Equal Protection Clause. The Supreme Court unanimously agreed and struck down the Idaho statute. It was the first time the Court had ever applied the Equal Protection Clause to a law that discriminated on the basis of gender (Blakemore, 2018)

Another case that hinged on gender discrimination and government benefits was Frontiero v. Richardson. The 1973 case was the first Ginsburg argued before the Supreme Court. When a woman in the U.S. Air Force applied for benefits for her dependent husband, she was told she’d have to prove he was a dependent, even though men in the Air Force didn’t have to prove that their wives were dependent on them.(Blakemore, 2018)

One thing that I admire her for is she actually fought for equal rights for men and women not one more than the other. She was a great judge and I was very sad to hear about her passing away.



Blakemore, E. (2018, May 30). Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Landmark Opinions on Women’s Rights. Retrieved October 07, 2020, from