As a woman, I celebrate Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s accomplishments. As a minority, I feel betrayed.

I say this with utmost respect about a justice who was an inspiration in so many ways. She battled cancer with a defiance that spoke to her power. She was a champion of gender equality. She had a sense of humor. She served 27 electric years as a liberal justice, and was in many ways a revolutionary. 

But now that she’s gone, no one can deny that women and minorities all over America are in danger. I don’t say this lightly.

People could lose their lives with the addition of one more conservative judge.

And as much as I respect and admire the notorious RBG, I wish she had taken that into consideration.

I wish she’d retired when she’d had the chance. She had eight full years under Obama’s presidency (seven, if you count out 2016, like Mitch McConnell did) to do so. 

In reading obituaries, nothing really hit as hard as this quote from NPR:

In a statement dictated to her granddaughter Clara Spera days before her death, [Ginsberg] said, “My most fervent wish is that I will not be replaced until a new President is installed.”

She knew.

Other justices have retired before her. 

There was the opportunity to prevent this. 

As a woman, I celebrate her legacy. But as a minority, I’m terrified.

I wish that, for our sakes, she had stepped down. 

For the Dreamers and DACA recipients. For the immigrants trapped in a vicious excuse for a system. For the kids caged up by ICE. For the refugees who are denied entry into the the U.S. because of the racist and discriminatory Muslim Ban. For the Black community. For the disadvantaged. For the millions of women who might lose abortion rights completely, their control over their health and their bodies stripped away.

As a minority, I’m watching all these futures being torn out of our hands – 

And being handed to a Republican in black robes. 

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