“With sorrow — for this Court, but more, for the many millions of American women who have today lost a fundamental constitutional protection — we dissent.”
-Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan
Progress isn’t always a straight line.
Today’s Supreme Court decision is wrong
but Congress passing the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act is a modest but real step forward. And the fight will go on, thanks to the activists, survivors, and families who continue to demand action.
Today, the Supreme Court not only reversed nearly 50 years of precedent, it relegated the most intensely personal decision someone can make to the whims of politicians and ideologues—attacking the essential freedoms of millions of Americans.
-President Barack Obama
♡ ‘Culture of Care’ @AnaMariaforNY
Timeline: America’s Long Civil Rights March
By Nikole Hannah-Jones and Al Shaw, ProPublica
Ever since the War of the States, Congress and the Supreme Court have clashed over the question of civil rights. When considering the recent rulings on affirmative action, the Voting Rights Act and the Defense of Marriage Act, it is useful to take the long view of the push and pull between Congress and the Supreme Court when it comes to civil rights. The long arc of history might bend toward justice, but there’s always been a lot of pendulum swinging along the way.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — With the U.S. Supreme Court expected to overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision before the end of its 2021-2022 term, Americans’ confidence in the court has dropped sharply over the past year and reached a new low in Gallup’s nearly 50-year trend. Twenty-five percent of U.S. adults say they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in the U.S. Supreme Court, down from 36% a year ago and five percentage points lower than the previous low recorded in 2014.
Abortion is a fundamental right for all women. It must be protected. I wish to express my solidarity with the women whose liberties are being undermined by the Supreme Court of the United States.
-French President Emmanuel Macron
The Kindness Bonus
“Please be kind” sounds like a moral imperative. And in some ways, it is.
But behind the theory of the firm and a key building block of successful communities is the idea that kind interactions are significantly more productive.
When people feel seen and respected, they’re more likely to focus on what needs to be done, instead of taking umbrage or being defensive.
When we leave opportunities and pathways for others, they can move forward with less friction.
And when we’re enjoying our days, we’ve created a posture that spreads.
Hockey games aren’t supposed to be kind. But just about everything else works better when we don’t throw elbows.
“CARE is the antidote to violence.”
– Saidiya Hartman
From Jon Meacham’s podcast today, June 24th, 2022
On June 24th, 1990, The Catholic Church discusses excommunicating politicians who disagree with the church on abortion rights.
Important listen for history, and in this moment.
Reflections of History
From former Governor Mario Cuomo in 1984, at Notre Dame:
“I speak here as a politician and also as a Catholic, raised as a Catholic, pre-Vatican II church, educated in Catholic schools, attached to the church first by birth and then by choice, now by love. […] The Catholic church is my spiritual home. My heart is there. And my hope. The Catholic who holds political office in a pluralistic democracy, who was elected to serve Jews and Muslims, atheists, and protestants, as well as Catholics, bear special responsibility. He or she undertakes to help to create conditions under which all can live with a maximum of dignity and with a reasonable degree of freedom. Where everyone who chooses can hold beliefs different from specifically Catholic ones, sometimes contradictory to them, with laws that protect people’s rights to divorce, use birth control, and even to choose abortion. I protect my right to be a Catholic by preserving your right to believe as a Jew, a protestant, or non-believer, or anything else you choose. I accept the church’s teaching on abortion, must I insist you do, by law? By denying you Medicaid funding, by a Constitutional amendment? If so, which one? Would that be the best way to avoid abortions, or prevent them? […] We should understand whether abortion is outlawed or not, our work has barely begun. The work of creating a society where the right to life doesn’t end at the moment of birth. Where an infant isn’t helped into a world that doesn’t care if it’s fed properly, housed decently, educated adequately.”
“Search for the means of grace, and the hope of glory.” -Jon Meacham
S A N C T U A R Y
California Governor Gavin Newsom:
Abortion is legal in California.
It will remain that way.
I just signed a bill that makes our state a safe haven for women across the nation.
We will not cooperate with any states that attempt to prosecute women or doctors for receiving or providing reproductive care.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
The news coming out of the United States is horrific. My heart goes out to the millions of American women who are now set to lose their legal right to an abortion. I can’t imagine the fear and anger you are feeling right now.
Signal App post today on twitter:
Here is your friendly reminder that we built Signal for private, secure communication. It’s built so you can communicate individually and in groups, through text and calls, without fear of interference or data collection. Free to use and not for profit.
“We are at last beginning to relegate to the history books the idea of the token woman,” Ruth Ginsburg said.
“Feminism [is the] notion that we should each be free to develop our own talents and not be held back by man made barriers,” Ginsburg said in her 2016 book “My Own Words.”
“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
1. Employers cannot discriminate against employees based on gender or reproductive choices.
ACLU Women’s Rights Project attorney Susan Deller Ross and Ginsburg pushed to have pregnancy discrimination recognized as a form of sex discrimination, according to the ACLU. The pair is credited for helping pass the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, an amendment to Title VII in 1978 which acknowledges pregnancy discrimination as unlawful. Women are now more protected against getting fired, or not considered for a job because they are pregnant or have plans to get pregnant.
2. State-funded schools must admit women.
In 1996, Ginsburg led the ruling decision in the United States v. Virginia case. Until then, women had been prohibited from attending the Virginia Military Institute. Ginsburg argued that rather than create a separate women’s program, they should be allowed to join the same program as men.
3. Women have the right to financial independence and equal benefits.
Ginsburg’s work paved the way for the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, which passed in1974 and allowed women to apply for bank accounts, credit cards, and mortgages without a male co-signer. She also helped ensure that women could receive the same military housing allowances as men, and women are no longer required to pay more for pension plans than men to receive the same benefits, according to the ACLU.
4. Men are entitled to the same caregiving and Social Security rights as women.
Throughout her career, Ginsburg stressed how gender equality benefits both men and women.
In 1968, Ginsburg represented Charles Moritz, a man who had never been married and claimed a tax deduction for caring for his mother, according to Smithsonian Magazine. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) denied his deduction because he was a man and unmarried. The US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit ruled that the IRS had violated the Equal Protection Clause of the US Constitution and in 1971 Section 214 of the IRS Code was amended to allow individuals to claim caregiving deductions, regardless of sex.
5. Juries must include women.
Up until 1979, jury duty was considered optional for women in the US. Several states argued that women should be exempt from participating due to family and household obligations. Ginsburg fought to require women to serve on juries on the basis that their civic duty should be valued the same as men’s.
“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made,” Ginsburg told USA Today in 2009. “It shouldn’t be that women are the exception.”
“I think part of what I find most inspiring about RBJ’s approach to social change was that it was so action-oriented even on a heady bench, it was exacting and unromantic. She wasn’t flying. She was plodding. She wasn’t grandiose. She was granular. I know we need all kinds of leadership to make this country different, but right now, in this moment of such urgency, I find her style–or lack thereof, really–refreshing. Her legacy is speaking to me like this: Keep your feet on the ground. Keep walking very deliberately and strategically, but for God’s sake, don’t fly to nowhere. Don’t fall in love with your own notions. Do the work. Do the hard things. Do them til you die.”
-Activist and author Courtney Martin
Chief Justice John Roberts on Ginsburg:
“Ruth used to ask: What is the difference between a bookkeeper in Brooklyn and a Supreme Court justice?”
“Her answer: one generation.”