Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Shares Her #MeToo Moment

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Shares Her #MeToo Moment

Darren Sullivan
January 23, 2018

Ginsburg was attending the film festival to talk about "RBG", the upcoming CNN documentary about her life. When Totenberg, a longtime friend of the justice and NPR legal affairs correspondent, remarked that Ginsburg likely did well on the chemistry test, Ginsburg answered dryly, "I deliberately made two mistakes".

Her husband Martin - who died in 2010 and who she has called the first man who "cared that I had a brain" - was sent to deal with things that day. SNL had one famous bit after President Donald Trump's inauguration in which McKinnon, as Ginsburg, joked that she now had to "stay alive" to ensure the current administration didn't get anymore justice nominations.

"Every woman of my vintage knows what sexual harassment is, although we didn't have a name for it", she said. "'I'll give you a practice exam, '" she said.

But when it was time to take the real class exam, she found it was identical to the practice test.

Realizing what the professor wanted in return, Ginsburg says she confronted him and "that was the end of it". "I went to his office and I said, 'How dare you?' How dare you?'" she recalled.


A report earlier this month said Ginsburg has already hired multiple law clerks for future terms. She's experienced it, like most women.

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Ginsburg also co-founded the American Civil Liberties Union's Women's Rights Project.

Ginsburg, clutching her microphone with both hands, said she grasped the seriousness of the abusive power collegiate men could have over women during her undergraduate studies at Cornell University in the 1950s.

"For so long women were silent, thinking there was nothing you could do about it", Ginsburg said.

Ginsburg knows from personal as well as professional experience what the law can do for those experiencing harassment and discrimination. "I liked the actress who portrayed me", she declared, adding playfully, "And I would like to say, 'Gins-burrrrn'".

"You have a husband with a good paying job in NY", she recalled the administrator saying.

In response to the dean's remarks, a group of women employed at Rutgers worked together to file an Equal Pay Act complaint, which the university later settled.