Book of Ruth: Justice Ginsburg on Religious Freedom

Book of Ruth: Justice Ginsburg on Religious Freedom
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin, File

In what turned out to be her final dissent, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg opened with a warning: “In accommodating claims of religious freedom, this Court has taken a balanced approach, one that does not allow the religious beliefs of some to overwhelm the rights and interests of others who do not share those beliefs.” But, to her deep dismay, she wrote, “Today, for the first time, the Court casts totally aside countervailing rights and interests in its zeal to secure religious rights to the nth degree.”

As it happened, this case centered on contraception, thus poignantly bringing together her views on religious freedom with her life’s work on gender equality. The latter, especially her commitment to women’s rights—first as an advocate through the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project and then as a judge—is perhaps most well-known. But her commitment to equality in the realm of religious freedom is no less important.

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