The Legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Allen Rostron, Barb Shelly
Wednesday, September 23, 2020
6:30 pm

Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a pop culture icon – “the Notorious RBG” – by the end of her life. Upon her death last week, at age 87, she inevitably became the center of a political storm over who will replace her and when that decision should be rendered. 

That fog of fame and furor should not overshadow the legacy of Ginsburg’s 27 years on the U.S. Supreme Court. Few justices left a clearer ideological footprint, both on the majority side of major decisions (requiring Virginia Military Institute to admit women in 1996, legalizing same-sex marriage in 2015) and in blistering minority dissent (often in cases involving gender discrimination and civil rights). Fellow Justice Stephen Breyer remembered her as “a woman of valor, a rock of righteousness.” 

Allen Rostron, a constitutional law professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, joins veteran journalist Barb Shelly, in examining Ginsburg’s most notable decisions and dissents and projecting where her inimitable voice will be missed most on the nation’s highest court. 

Rostron is the William R. Jacques Constitutional Law Scholar and associate dean of students at UMKC, where he teaches and writes in the areas of constitutional law, tort law, products liability, and conflict of laws. Shelly was an opinion columnist, metro columnist, editor, and reporter for The Kansas City Star and is currently a contributing writer for The Pitch and frequent guest on KCPT- Kansas City PBS' Week in Review

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