Friday, September 18, 2020, was a day of shock and sadness as the news broke that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died after battling pancreatic cancer. Ginsburg’s death also triggered high anxiety, as it created a Supreme Court vacancy while Donald Trump was still in office, within weeks of the upcoming presidential election. Ignoring Ginsburg’s stated wishes, the Republicans wasted no time filling the vacancy, with Trump nominating Amy Coney Barrett on September 29 and the Senate confirming her on October 26.
Now, two years later, Ginsburg is posthumously receiving a well-deserved honor by the U.S. Postal Service, which revealed that she will be the subject of a “Forever” stamp to be issued in 2023. In its announcement, the Postal Service noted how Ginsburg began her career as an “activist lawyer fighting gender discrimination.” Ginsburg then proceeded to become “a respected jurist whose important majority opinions advancing equality and strong dissents on socially controversial rulings made her a passionate proponent of equal justice and an icon of American culture.”
This postage stamp isn’t the first time the federal government has honored Ginsburg since her untimely passing. On March 31, the last day of Women’s History Month, the U.S. Navy announced its plans to name a ship the “USNS Ruth Bader Ginsburg.” Once constructed, the ship will be part of the John Lewis-class of replenishment oilers, which are all named for civil and human rights icons.
In announcing this honor, the Navy praised Ginsburg as “a historic figure who vigorously advocated for women’s rights and gender equality.” The Navy also pointed out Ginsburg’s specific contribution, noting she was “instrumental to why we now have women of all backgrounds, experiences and talents serving within our ranks, side by side with their male Sailor and Marine counterparts.”
The postage stamp, which you can view here, features Ginsburg as intense but with a hint of a smile, wearing a black judicial robe along with her iconic white beaded collar. Ginsburg once very fittingly said, “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.” This new stamp will help remind Americans of Justice Ginsburg’s enduring legacy and encourage us to remain hopeful for the future of the Supreme Court.