118 Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Women, Equality, Feminism

These Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes will empower and inspire you to achieve anything.

Joan Ruth Bader Ginsburg was born on March 15, 1933, was an American lawyer and jurist. She served as an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1993 till her death. She became the first Jewish woman and second woman ever to serve on the Court when President Bill Clinton appointed her.

Ginsburg spent her early years in Brooklyn, New York. Even though her mother never attended college, but she made sure that her daughter understands the value of education and independence. Her early life was heavily influenced by her mother. Her mother died shortly before Ginsburg graduated from high school.

RBG Quotes on Leadership

Ginsburg finished first in her class, earning her bachelor’s degree at Cornell University in 1954. Later she served as editor of the Columbia Law Review. Even after having some extraordinary achievements in her pocket, she still struggled in a very male-dominated environment.

She has been through so much in her life but never gives up her fight for a better future. She created a strategy to fight for women’s rights and also created a way for men to get equal justice. She always believed and fought for gender equality till her last breath.

Ginsburg decided not to retire in 2013 or 2014 even when she was diagnosed with cancer and struggled all her remaining life from various and serious conditions such as colon and pancreatic cancer.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is an inspiration and an icon of justice who passed away on September 18th, 2020 at the age of 87 due to complications of metastatic pancreatic cancer.

Here we are sharing a collection of Ruth Bader Ginsburg quotes on women empowerment, gender equality, and feminism for you to empower you to stand with the truth.

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes

“Speak your mind even if your voice shakes.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“My mother told me to be a lady. And for her, that meant be your own person, be independent.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Who will take responsibility for raising the next generation?” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“When I’m sometimes asked when will there be enough [women on the Supreme Court] and I say, ‘When there are nine,’ people are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“If I had any talent God could give me, I would be a great diva.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“So often in life, things that you regard as an impediment turn out to be great, good fortune.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“My dissenting opinions, like my briefs, are intended to persuade. And sometimes one must be forceful about saying how wrong the Court’s decision is.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Our system of justice is surely richer for the diversity of background and experience of its judges. It was poorer when nearly all of its participants were cut from the same mold.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“I would not like to be the only woman on the court.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

RBG Quotes About Women

“It is not like I have gone crazy, I just don’t want to take any chances. You never know what could happen.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“A gender line… helps to keep women not on a pedestal, but in a cage.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“When contemplated in its extreme, almost any power looks dangerous.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Fight for the things that you care about. But do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“The enormous difference between fighting gender discrimination as opposed to race discrimination is good people immediately perceive race discrimination as evil and intolerable. But when I talked about sex-based discrimination, I got the response, ‘What are you talking about? Women are treated ever so much better than men!”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I ask no favor for my sex. All I ask of our brethren is that they take their feet off our necks.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“We may be anxious to reduce crime, but we should remember that in our system of justice, the presumption of innocence is prime, and the law cannot apply one rule to Joe who is a good man, and another to John, who is a hardened criminal.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Rabbi Alfred Bettleheim once said: “Prejudice saves us a painful trouble, the trouble of thinking.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“For both men and women the first step in getting power is to become visible to others, and then to put on an impressive show. . . . As women achieve power, the barriers will fall. As society sees what women can do, as women see what women can do, there will be more women out there doing things, and we’ll all be better off for it.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“When a thoughtless or unkind word is spoken, best tune out. Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

Best Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Women

“It is not women’s liberation, it is women’s and men’s liberation.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I remember envying the boys long before I even knew the word feminism because I liked shop better than cooking or sewing.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Feminism … I think the simplest explanation, and one that captures the idea, is a song that Marlo Thomas sang, ‘Free to be You and Me.’ Free to be, if you were a girl—doctor, lawyer, Indian chief. Anything you want to be. And if you’re a boy, and you like teaching, you like nursing, you would like to have a doll, that’s OK too. That notion that we should each be free to develop our own talents, whatever they may be, and not be held back by artificial barriers—manmade barriers, certainly not heaven-sent.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“the greatest menace to freedom is an inert people; that public discussion is a political duty; and that this should be a fundamental principle of the American government. Brandeis”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Depriving a parent of parental status is as devastating as a criminal conviction.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“A prime part of the history of our Constitution is the story of the extension of constitutional rights to people once ignored or excluded.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“In Greek mythology, Pallas Athena was celebrated as the goddess of reason and justice.1 To end the cycle of violence that began with Agamemnon’s sacrifice of his daughter, Iphigenia, Athena created a court of justice to try Orestes, thereby installing the rule of law in lieu of the reign of vengeance.2 Recall also the biblical Deborah (from the Book of Judges).3 She was at the same time prophet, judge, and military leader. This triple-headed authority was exercised by only two other Israelites, both men: Moses and Samuel. People came from far and wide to seek Deborah’s judgment. According to the rabbis, Deborah was independently wealthy; thus she could afford to work pro bono.4 Even if its members knew nothing of Athena and Deborah, the U.S. legal establishment resisted admitting women into its ranks far too long.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“I think the side that wants to take the choice away from women and give it to the state, they’re fighting a losing battle. Time is on the side of change.” Interview with The New York Times in 2009. – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“If you’re going to change things, you have to be with the people who hold the levers.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Another often-asked question when I speak in public: “Do you have some good advice you might share with us?” Yes, I do. It comes from my savvy mother-in-law, advice she gave me on my wedding day. “In every good marriage,” she counseled, “it helps sometimes to be a little deaf.” I have followed that advice assiduously, and not only at home through fifty-six years of a marital partnership nonpareil. I have employed it as well in every workplace, including the Supreme Court of the United States. When a thoughtless or unkind word is spoken, best tune out. Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes Fight For The Things You Care About

“People who think you could wave a magic wand and the legacy of the past will be over are blind.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Anger, resentment, envy, and self-pity are wasteful reactions. They greatly drain one’s time. They sap energy better devoted to productive endeavors.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“According to Ruth, Nabokov changed the way she read and wrote: “He used words to paint pictures. Even today, when I read, I notice with pleasure when an author has chosen a particular word, a particular place, for the picture it will convey to the reader.” Ruth remembers”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Work hard on each opinion, but once the case is decided, don’t look back; go on to the next case and give it your all. It’s not productive to worry about what’s out and released, over and done. That’s advice I now give to people new to the judging business.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Yet, as the numbers reveal, women in law, even today, are not entering a bias-free profession.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Every girl and every boy that’s born alive is either a little liberal or else a little conservative.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“No one who is in business for profit can foist his or her beliefs on a workforce that includes many people who do not share those beliefs.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Justice Sandra Day O’Connor: For both men and women the first step in getting power is to become visible to others, and then to put on an impressive show. . . . As women achieve power, the barriers will fall. As society sees what women can do, as women see what women can do, there will be more women out there doing things, and we’ll all be better off for it.XII”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Throwing out preclearance when it has worked and is continuing to work to stop discriminatory changes is like throwing away your umbrella in a rainstorm because you are not getting wet.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“And I give you this picture because it fairly captures our nearly fifty-year happy marriage, during which I have offered up an astonishing number of foolish pronouncements with absolute assurance, and Ruth, with only limited rancor, has ignored almost everyone. A”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Funny Quotes

“spent no time fretting, and found a way to do what I thought important to get done.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“We will all profit from a more diverse, inclusive society, understanding, accommodating, even celebrating our differences, while pulling together for the common good.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“One is that we were betraying our most fundamental values, and, two, that legal skills could help make things better, could help to challenge what was going on.” 3”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Prisons should be co-ed because separate quarters are discriminatory.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“My mother was very strong about my doing well in school and living up to my potential.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Less than 3 percent of positions in the federal government at and above GS-16 rank are held by women.8”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“We children of public school age can do much to aid in the promotion of peace. We must try to train ourselves and those about us to live together with one another as good neighbors for this idea is embodied in the great new Charter of the United Nations. It is the only way to secure the world against future wars and maintain an everlasting peace.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“So now the perception is, yes, women are here to stay. And when I’m sometimes asked when will there be enough [women on the Supreme Court]? And I say when there are nine, people are shocked. But there’d been nine men, and nobody’s ever raised a question about that.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“exuberant presence of Justice Scalia, the Court is “a paler place.” The two cases at the top of Justice Ginsburg’s most”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Art

“Generalizations about the “way women are” and estimates of what is appropriate for most women no longer justify denying opportunity to women whose talent and capacity place them outside the average description.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“ACLU had won at the court of appeals level, Charles E. Moritz v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Ordinarily, our mutual respect is only momentarily touched by our sometimes strong disagreements on what the law is.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“We have the oldest written constitution still in force in the world, and it starts out with three words, ‘We, the people.’” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“She probably did not think of herself as a feminist, but she had the strong sense that her state’s law was unjust, and faith that the judiciary could redress her grievance. Ultimately, her faith was vindicated. The Supreme Court unanimously declared Idaho’s male preference statute unconstitutional, a plain denial to Sally Reed of the equal protection of the state’s law.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Judges do read the newspapers and are affected, not by the weather of the day, as distinguished constitutional law professor Paul Freund once said, but by the climate of the era.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“I am a judge born, raised, and proud of being a Jew. The demand for justice runs through the entirety of the Jewish tradition. I hope, in my years on the bench of the Supreme Court of the United States, I will have the strength and the courage to remain constant in the service of that demand. – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“be the secret of happiness and courage to be the secret of liberty. They believed that freedom to think as you will and to speak as you think are means indispensable to the discovery and spread of political truth; that without free speech and assembly discussion would be futile; that with them, discussion affords ordinarily adequate protection against the dissemination of noxious doctrine; that the greatest menace to freedom is an inert people; that public discussion is a political duty; and that this should be a fundamental principle of the American government.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“I always ask my law clerks, in addition to reading all the briefs, including all the amici briefs, that if there’s a good law review article, they should bring it to me.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“A sense of humor is helpful for those who would advance social change.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Neck

“In most civil law systems there are no dissents. There is a single opinion for the court: it is unanimous; it is highly stylized; you can’t tell which judge wrote it.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Prejudice saves us a painful trouble, the trouble of thinking.” In our beloved land families were not scattered, communities not erased nor our nation destroyed by the ravages of the World War.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

”I do hope that some of my dissents will one day be the law.”
– Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I’m a very strong believer in listening and learning from others.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Dissents speak to a future age. It’s not simply to say, ‘my colleagues are wrong and I would do it this way,’ but the greatest dissents do become court opinions.”- Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Yet, dare we be at ease? We are part of a world whose unity has been almost completely shattered.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“I think our system is being polluted by money.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“We care about this institution more than our individual egos and we are all devoted to keeping the Supreme Court in the place that it is, as a co-equal third branch of government and I think a model for the world in the collegiality and independence of judges.”- Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“The written argument endures. The oral argument is fleeting.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I try to teach through my opinions, through my speeches, how wrong it is to judge people on the basis of what they look like, color of their skin, whether they’re men or women.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Motherhood

“My rule was I will not answer a question that attempts to project how I will rule in a case that might come before the court.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“You can’t have it all, all at once. Who – man or woman – has it all, all at once? Over my lifespan, I think I have had it all. But in different periods of time, things were rough. And if you have a caring life partner, you help the other person when that person needs it.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I’m not very good at promotion.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I don’t say women’s rights—I say the constitutional principle of the equal citizenship stature of men and women.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I became a lawyer for selfish reasons. I thought I could do a lawyer’s job better than any other.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg via Lynn Gilbert, Particular Passions: Talks With Women Who Have Shaped Our Times

“Legislators know much more about elections than the Court does.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I think unconscious bias is one of the hardest things to get at.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Reading is the key that opens doors to many good things in life. Reading shaped my dreams, and more reading helped me make my dreams come true.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“In every good marriage, it helps sometimes to be a little deaf.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“People who have been hardworking, tax paying, those people ought to be given an opportunity to be on a track that leads towards citizenship, and if that happened, then they wouldn’t be prey to the employers who say, ‘We want you because we know that you work for a salary we could not lawfully pay anyone else.’” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Leadership

“[I want to be remembered as] someone who used whatever talent she had to do her work to the very best of her ability. And to help repair tears in her society, to make things a little better through the use of whatever ability she has. To do something, as my colleague David Souter would say, outside myself. ‘Cause I’ve gotten much more satisfaction for the things that I’ve done for which I was not paid.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court, and Appellate Advocacy: Mastering Oral Argument

“The decision whether or not to bear a child is central to a woman’s life, to her well-being and dignity. It is a decision she must make for herself. When the government controls that decision for her, she is being treated as less than a full adult human responsible for her own choices.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“We should not be held back from pursuing our full talents, from contributing what we could contribute to the society, because we fit into a certain mould ― because we belong to a group that historically has been the object of discrimination.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“We still have many neighborhoods that are racially identified. We still have many schools that even though the days of state-enforced segregation are gone, segregation because of geographical boundaries remains.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“When police or prosecutors conceal significant exculpatory or impeaching material, we hold, it is ordinarily incumbent on the state to set the record straight.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Reproductive choice has to be straightened out. There will never be a woman of means without choice anymore. That just seems to me so obvious. The states that changed their abortion laws before Roe are not going to change back. So we have a policy that only affects poor women, and it can never be otherwise.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“If you have a caring life partner, you help the other person when that person needs it. I had a life partner who thought my work was as important as his, and I think that made all the difference for me.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Approving some religious claims while deeming others unworthy of accommodation could be ‘perceived as favoring one religion over another,’ the very ‘risk the [Constitution’s] Establishment Clause was designed to preclude.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“The emphasis must not be on the right to abortion but on the right to privacy and reproductive control.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“They’re not a question of additional benefits. I mean, they touch every aspect of life. Your partner is sick. Social Security. I mean, it’s pervasive. It’s not as though, well, there’s this little Federal sphere and it’s only a tax question. It’s as Justice Kennedy said, 1100 statutes, and it affects every area of life. And so he was really diminishing what the State has said is marriage. You’re saying, no, State said two kinds of marriage; the full marriage, and then this sort of skim milk marriage.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Equality

“I would like to be remembered as someone who used whatever talent she had to do her work to the very best of her ability.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“At Cornell University, professor of European literature Vladimir Nabokov changed the way I read and the way I write. Words could paint pictures, I learned from him. Choosing the right word, and the right word order, he illustrated, could make an enormous difference in conveying an image or an idea.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“Be independent and be a lady.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“When I graduated from law school in 1959, there wasn’t a single woman on any federal bench. It wouldn’t be a realistic ambition for a woman to want to become a federal judge.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“I would not look to the United States Constitution if I were drafting a constitution in the year 2012.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Reading is the key that opens doors to many good things in life. Reading shaped my dreams, and more reading helped me make my dreams come true.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“People who are well represented at trial do not get the death penalty.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“[Belva] Lockwood sought more than suffrage. She urged full political and civil rights for all women. Though she could not vote for president, she twice ran for the office herself, pointing out that nothing in the Constitution barred a woman’s candidacy. (She took that bold step 124 years before Hillary Rodham Clinton first became a contender for the Democratic Party’s nomination.) Explaining why she entered the race, she wrote in a letter to her future running mate, Marietta Stow: ‘We shall never have equal rights until we take them, nor equal respect until we command it.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Members of the legislature, people who have run for office, know the connection between money and influence on what laws get passed.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“How to be Like RBG:
Work for what you believe in, but pick your battles, and don’t burn your bridges. Don’t be afraid to take charge, think about what you want, then do the work, but then enjoy what makes you happy, bring along your crew, have a sense of humor.
-Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Notorious RBG by
Irin Carmon”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Feminism

“If you want to influence people, you want them to accept your suggestions, you don’t say, ‘You don’t know how to use the English language,’ or ‘How could you make that argument?’ It will be welcomed much more if you have a gentle touch than if you are aggressive.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“A constitution, as important as it is, will mean nothing unless the people are yearning for liberty and freedom.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Each part of my life provided respite from the other and gave me a sense of proportion that classmates trained only on law studies lacked.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“There is a Constitutional right to prostitution.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Cushman, who assigned her to research McCarthy’s assault on civil liberties, “wanted me to understand two things,” Ruth recalls. “One is that we were betraying our most fundamental values, and, two, that legal skills could help make things better, could help to challenge what was going on.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“You can disagree without being disagreeable.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Racial discrimination in elections in Texas is no mere historical artifact. To the contrary, Texas has been found in violation of the Voting Rights Act in every redistricting cycle from and after 1970.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. It shouldn’t be that women are the exception.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“All I can say is I am sensitive to discrimination on any basis because I have experienced that upset.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Women will have achieved true equality when men share with them the responsibility of bringing up the next generation.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes On Love

“Judges should avoid commenting on a candidate for public office.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“The Sixth Amendment secures to persons charged with a crime the right to be tried by an impartial jury reflecting a fair cross-section of the community.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Yet what greater defeat could we suffer than to come to resemble the forces we oppose in their disrespect for human dignity?”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“My mother was very strong about my doing well in school and living up to my potential. Two things were important to her and she repeated them endlessly. One was to ‘be a lady,’ and that meant conduct yourself civilly, don’t let emotions like anger or envy get in your way. And the other was to be independent, which was an unusual message for mothers of that time to be giving their daughters.”
― Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Own Words

“I said on the equality side of it, that it is essential to a woman’s equality with man that she be the decision-maker, that her choice be controlling.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“Promoting active liberty does not mean allowing the majority to run roughshod over minorities. It calls for taking special care that all groups have a chance to fully participate in society and the political process.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“You think about what would have happened … Suppose I had gotten a job as a permanent associate. Probably I would have climbed up the ladder and today I would be a retired partner. So often in life, things that you regard as an impediment turn out to be great good fortune.”- Ruth Bader Ginsburg

“America is known as a country that welcomes people to its shores. All kinds of people. The image of the Statue of Liberty with Emma Lazarus’ famous poem. She lifts her lamp and welcomes people to the golden shore, where they will not experience prejudice because of the color of their skin, the religious faith that they follow.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Did these Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes inspire you?

Despite all the difficulties she has faced in her career, she had shined out in all aspects of her life. She is an inspiration and role model for many women. She did what her heart says and follow the path even if it was difficult. We hope these Ruth Bader Ginsburg Quotes will inspire you the same.

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