Berks County Bar Association The Berks Barrister Winter 2020-21 - 12

w w w.BERKSBAR.org

AN AFTERNOON WITH RGB
Continued from page 11
1872. (Her list also included Nancy Drew!) She went on to
reminisce with the Dean about some of her seminal dissenting
decisions, which was, of course, fascinating. Her memory
and acuity were nothing short of incredible. She cited cases,
names, lawyers, and judges like she was talking about members
of her family.

Deb Franklin, center, and her University of Buffalo Law School
classmates still recall how Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader
Ginsburg's visit created a rock concert-like atmosphere on campus.
On the beautiful, sunny afternoon of August 26, 2019 (after
all, Buffalo is the Miami of the north according to former BCBA
president, Jeff Franklin), we lined up outside of the gorgeous,
architecturally and acoustically perfect Kleinhans Music Hall to
tailgate and pray for good seats inside. I'm not joking when I say
that there was an electric energy to the crowd, which numbered
approximately 2500. It was a rock concert atmosphere, although
the drinks were slightly more upscale than I remember from my
early concert days. There were lots of little girls there with their
mothers, grandmothers and aunts, many wearing the ubiquitous
RBG lace collars and glasses. My friends and I numbered 6, and
we were thrilled to be together. We relished the wait, enjoying
the sunshine, our beverages, and our reunion.

When asked to name a characteristic which all successful
judges share, Justice Ginsburg named patience and an ability
to listen. Thinking about it for another moment, she went on
to say, " Compassion is another important quality. Law affects
real people. It exists to govern and serve society, so judges
need an appreciation of how the law keeps society operating
peacefully. Judges should be cognizant of how essential this
function of the law is. "
I sincerely hope that she had an opportunity to share this
view with her colleagues and clerks, and that it will guide
current and future Supreme Court justices in how they
approach their roles on the High Court.
Justice Ginsburg spoke wistfully about the year she was
nominated to the Court, 1993, and how there was a true
bipartisan spirit in Senate. She recalled that Republican
Senator Orrin Hatch was in her corner back then, but
acknowledged that would not be the case now. In other
breaking news, she also expressed distaste for expanding the
size of the Court. She spoke with obvious joy about her deep

Once inside, we found seats, and awaited the " star attraction "
- the Notorious RBG! The forum was a casual Q&A hosted
by University of Buffalo Law School Dean Aviva Abramovsky,
also a Cornell alumna. Justice Ginsburg emerged onto the
stage assisted by security personnel, who were also stationed
throughout the hall. She appeared to be quite frail but moved
purposefully to her seat. Dean Abramovsky's first question
was: " As we commemorate the 100th anniversary of the 19th
Amendment, guaranteeing women the right to vote, who were
the women that inspired you? "
Justice Ginsburg spoke quietly, but thanks to the superb
acoustics in the legendary music hall, we hung on her every
word. She spoke for about 15 minutes, giving a comprehensive
history of women in the law who advocated for equal pay and
equal access to the law, beginning with Belva Lockwood, the
first woman admitted to practice before the Supreme Court in
12 | Berks Barrister

Deb Franklin and her friends awaiting the arrival of Supreme
Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg inside Kleinhans Music Hall
at the University of Buffalo.


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Berks County Bar Association The Berks Barrister Winter 2020-21

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Berks County Bar Association The Berks Barrister Winter 2020-21

Berks County Bar Association The Berks Barrister Winter 2020-21 - 1
Berks County Bar Association The Berks Barrister Winter 2020-21 - 2
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