Between the pandemic’s toll on mothers and the right’s assault on reproductive rights, the equality Ruth Bader Ginsburg fought for has never been more at risk.
Bader Ginsburg, who died Friday at the age of 87, spent her life building a world in which women and men were on equal footing, at home and beyond. Through careful, strategic legal work, first as a litigator and later as a Supreme Court justice, Ginsburg helped turn the idea of gender equality into a fundamental right ― and she did it while raising two kids and facing down the same discrimination she spent her career dismantling.
Now her battle for gender equality is under threat. Women stand to lose not only access to abortion but even access to birth control and adequate health care if Obamacare is overturned. The right of pregnant women to be free from discrimination at work is not settled, with Democratic lawmakers trying to pass better protections. Women are still being forced out of work or denied jobs because they’re expecting, just as Ginsburg was when she was living with her husband in Oklahoma after they were first married. Recently, “progressive” employer SoulCycle was sued for demoting a pregnant executive and then firing her shortly after she gave birth.
The Department of Education under President Donald Trump wants to roll back civil rights protections for college students who’ve been sexually assaulted or harassed. Women are still paid less than men to do the same jobs, and the gap is even larger for Black and Hispanic women.
Meanwhile, the COVID-19 pandemic threatens to derail an entire generation of women, pushing them out of the workforce to handle caregiv