Last night my family gathered for dinner on the first night of Rosh Hashanah. My mother made an apple and honey cake, “for a sweet new year,” and as we sat down together to enjoy, news came through of Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s passing.
I’m still trying to wrap my head around this loss, and I’m feeling a lot of feelings, but I’ve been thinking of an event a few years ago, as one of the highlights of my past career as director of an arts center is centered around RBG.
In 2017, in recognition of Women’s History Month, I was invited to host a workshop for a local Girl Scout troop. We sat in a circle on the ground and took turns reading “I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark,” and we talked about how all the work RBG did for equality was a lot like the Girl Scout Law, to be honest and fair and to make the world a better place. We finished our gathering with a craft project, making bedazzled judges’ collars, so that we could all be like RBG too.
In the Jewish tradition, one who dies during Rosh Hashanah is a “tzaddik,” or a person of great righteousness. RBG was that, and so much more. She was a force to be reckoned with, a powerhouse who meant many things to many people, and we are all indebted to her for her relentless pursuit of equality. May her memory be a blessing, and may we all strive to be a little more like RBG.