With the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the left lost a feminist icon.
Of course, one might assume this is because Ginsburg, who graduated at the top of her class at Cornell University, was one of just nine women enrolled at Harvard Law School, the first female tenured professor at Columbia Law School, and the second woman on the U.S. Supreme Court.
If this were the case, then they’d certainly also admire women like Sandra Day O’Connor, Margaret Thatcher, and Condoleezza Rice, but they don’t.
Ginsburg is admired by progressive feminists not simply because she was a trailblazer for women in the legal world, but because of her long career of ruling against regulations on abortion.
As Notre Dame law professor Richard Garnett told the Catholic News Service after Ginsburg’s death, “She very consistently ruled against regulations of abortion, including regulations that the court upheld and that most Americans support, including the federal law banning partial-birth abortions. In her view, the Constitution permits very few, if any, measures that regulate abortion in order to vindicate the life and dignity of the unborn child.”
Modern feminism has long relied on the narrative that a woman must have access to abortion services in order to succeed in a “man’s world,” and Ginsburg was a downright hero to the cause and a pro-abortion activist judge on the bench.
To feminists, Ginsburg’s career and stance on abortion are proof of this longstanding myth of “choice.”
“Chosen motherhood is the real liberation,” wrote progressive feminist icon Betty Friedan. “The choice to have a child makes the whole experience of motherhood different, and the choice to be generative in other ways can at last be made, and is being made, by many women now, without guilt.”
Sound familiar? This is the reasoning that pro-abortion feminists have been using for decades to justify the procedure that ends the life of an unborn, human child in the name of “feminism” and “liberation.”
The woman who has now been nominated as her replacement, however, has led a life that blows this tragic myth of “chosen motherhood” out of the water.
Amy Coney Barrett has a legal career as impressive as Ginsburg’s, made all the more so by the fact that she has been raising children throughout.
Where Ginsburg represents “choice” to modern feminists, Barrett represents messages that women should receive about balancing motherhood and careers: It can be done with hard work, determination, and virtue.
Barrett, should she be confirmed to the Supreme Court, would become the first mother of school-aged children to sit on the bench. She has seven children in total, including two who were adopted and one who has special needs.
This landmark she would achieve for career-minded mothers objectively proves that women have clearly made great strides in the larger movement to be included in the function of our republic’s sacred institutions.
And it also utterly destroys the myth that women need the “choice” to kill their unborn babies in order to do it.
This week, Live Action Network’s Lila Rose noted the refutation that Judge Barrett’s career makes to the feminist narratives on motherhood by pointing to actress Michelle Williams’ Golden Globes acceptance speech from earlier this year. Williams made headlines by declaring that her access to abortion enabled her to succeed in Hollywood.
Williams, while clutching the gleaming award that, by her estimation, was worth more than the life of her deceased child, used the same argument of “choice” to make this gut-wrenching expression of gratitude for abortion.
“I wouldn’t have been able to do this without employing a woman’s right to choose,” she declared. “To choose when to have my children and with whom, when I felt supported and able to balance our lives, knowing, as all mothers know, the scales must and will tip towards our children.”
As Rose succinctly asked in a tweet, “What is true empowerment? Michelle Williams, clutching a golden globe as she describes the abortion she had to achieve her fame, or Amy Coney Barrett, holding the hand of one of her 7 children as she heads to accept her nomination to the US Supreme Court?”
There is no greater dehumanization of a child than to declare its life not worth living or its mother not worth having because that child has been conceived at an inconvenient time.
Barrett, as a mother, likely knew that when it came to bringing life into this world and embracing the calling of motherhood, her children and her career were not at odds. I doubt that it has been easy to balance such an impressive judicial career, but since when do great women lead lives of ease and convenience?
Amy Coney Barrett has lived a life of virtue, one that embraces the humanity of both women and children. There is no virtue in — and certainly nothing feminist about — convincing women that they need to murder their own children just to succeed.
You can view the Falkirk Center Podcast discussion with Senator Marsha Blackburn on conservative women here: