I really don’t think I am the only person in America who believes that our opposing views on politics, beliefs, or issues is completely out of control. We continue to howl about how much we want our country back and how much we want normalcy in this country again. Yet in this era of social media overkill we all to often find ourselves searching for that quote or that insult that will gives us pleasure and self-assurance that we are indeed on the correct side of what is right and decent and that the other side is dead wrong and indecent.
In February of this year Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was found dead in Presido County of Texas. He was a Trenton, New Jersey born conservative on the Supreme Court. An appointee of President Reagan there was never any doubt that his views were those of a very staunch conservative. His arguments on many critical issues were dearly embraced by the right wing thinking populous in this country. It was said that many of his quotes while practicing law could bring a smile or a grin to the face of the most somber of judges.
Probably the saddest part of the death of Justice Scalia was that in no time after his death was confirmed was the alignment of political “experts” on both sides who began to sling unkind insults and opinions as to who would be appointed to replace him on the highest court in the land. Grieving for his loss or celebrating his very productive life seemed lost in all the political scuttlebutt that manifests itself in the political arenas all across the country.
The odd thing is that grieving and celebrating was not lost in the heart of one of the most liberal minds in the country. That heart and mind belonged to fellow justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Ginsburg who was an appointee of President Clinton usually stood on very liberal ground and rarely if ever agreed with Scalia on any issue that was clearly a right/left argument. The Brooklyn born Ginsburg had won the favor of liberals everywhere because of her positions that were deeply embraced by the civil liberty advocates around the country.
Ginsburg and Scalia had become best buddies as she proclaimed after his death when they served in the circuit court of Washington DC early in their careers. They both loved the opera and on many occasions shared an evening enjoying that together as well as dining out together even more frequently. They, from time to time, would spar outside the court on different issues but never let their differences affect their friendship. They loved to make jokes about one another and even more enjoyed complimenting one another in public.
In speaking after his passing Justice Ginsburg said that some of the criticisms that he would make following a dissent on his part made her writing for the opinion of the court a ” better statement than would have been the case had he remained silent. In short she said that he made her better.
In the political world, in the world surrounding the nations capitol this country could use more Scalia-Ginsburg relationships. You see when a staunch liberal and a staunch conservative can understand that the other loves the constitution and the institution that they serve as much as the other great things can happen. They can actually get things done. Their criticisms of each other can actually make them better and most of all their respect for the other can make them friends.
This country can be grateful for the service and dedication of Justice Antonin Scalia and no one knows that better than his “best buddy” Ruth Bader Ginsburg.