You all already know me to be quite political and rather open about discussing it (just ask Mr. Soccorsi), so I’m sure no one will be surprised when I share with you what I got for an early birthday present. I received a biography of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, appropriately titled Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
While I was struck by her work ethic, legal brilliance and steadfast conviction, I was even more amazed by her relationships with her fellow justices, in particular, Antonin Scalia.
RBG and Scalia are polar opposites on almost every spectrum of every legal and political scale ever created. They’re both known for their fiery and sharp dissents which are often against each other. They both lead their respective wings of the court. But yet, as I found out, they’re close friends. Not friendly colleagues who share small talk before walking into their chambers. Friends. They go to the opera together. They have rung in the New Year together for years at the Ginsburgs’. They went to India and rode an elephant together. He’s this large, bellowing, Italian man and she calls him “Nino.”
I was absolutely fascinated that these two people, who are at the very top of the legal world, whose jobs are to basically decide the fate, in part, of our entire society, have a deep mutual respect and admiration for each other.
My first question was, “How is this even possible? How do they not hate each other?”
My second question was, “Why do I find it so absurd that two people can disagree vehemently but still like each other personally?”
In our world today, people seem to criticize not only political opinion, but also personal dignity. We seem to demean and belittle, disregarding those who don’t hold views similar to ours, and it seems like second nature to do so.
Instead, we should be taking stock of RBG and Nino, two extremely different individuals, who still will take the time to both listen and respect each other.
On pages 28-29, we have three columnists sharing their views on the 2016 Presidential Race. These students have chosen to bravely share their beliefs with the entire community. I encourage you all to read these pieces, read them with respect and read them with an open mind, even if you’re 99.5 percent sure you won’t end up agreeing with the content.
Jenny Jiao, ’16