She sat there, wondering about the upcoming decision. ”I know his opinion on this one. Why would I expect anything different from him?” The petite woman sighed and thought about their polarity. Over the years, as she became increasingly acquainted with him, she realized what a kind and thoughtful person he was. His brilliance was a given, but the treat was experiencing his generosity. All of those kids he sired, God Bless his wife, and yet he had an abundance of love for all of them.
Knowing his kindness, she could not comprehend his desire for restraint. She fought so hard for the underdog and vowed to continue to do this for as long as she lived. Women, Black, LGBTQ, and other minorities required their assistance. Ever so often, when she raised the issue with him, he would smile. She could always predict his response. He reminded her that they both wanted equal opportunity for all, but they viewed the journey differently.
As she prepared for their next hearing, she thought about how blessed she was for him to be an integral part of her life. Thirty years earlier, she would have scoffed at the idea of befriending the likes of him. Now, as she gathered up her papers, getting ready to see him and their colleagues, an amused twinkle entered her eyes, recognizing that she could not imagine this life without him.
As much as he sees the world through a different lens, his admiration for this woman so small in stature but enormous in spirit goes beyond words.
He watches her enter the room and looks at her affectionately. He rolls his eyes and winks at her. Yes, he knows exactly how she will see this next matter. Once in a while, when they discuss their views, he reminds her that he is not immune to the plight of the people for whom they decide. Except for a few issues, however, he is steadfast in adhering to his position. He chastens her around the point that it is not up to them to change this. Ferociously, she disagrees, and their argument becomes heated. As they spar, he is incensed, and by the look in her eyes, she is equally so. Eventually, one of them puts out their arms. As much as he sees the world through a different lens, his admiration for this woman so small in stature but enormous in spirit goes beyond words. He smiles inwardly and reflects on how the rest of the argument usually unfolds. After much exhaustion, one puts out their arms, and he wraps his arms around her. As he discussed with his wife, he could never imagine holding someone so opposite of him in such high regard.
They stare at each other across the room. She gestures about a phone call. He nods in the affirmative knowing what she means. This evening, they and their spouses will meet for dinner, taking great delight in being in each others’ company. Any discussion of politics will be null.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg was a remarkable woman, legendary in her work ethic, and adamant in her beliefs. Justice Anton Scalia, many would agree, was equally talented and dedicated to his positions. Although opposed to one another in most opinions, these icons were able to put aside politics. Consequently, their deep and long-term friendship endured despite their differences. I imagine they are smiling as they are now reunited, and my guess is they can agree on at least one thing. What is that, you might ask? “My friend, what a pleasure it is to see you again finally.”
I believe the Justices’ friendship is exemplary.
In these increasingly hyper-partisan times about to be put on steroids, I can only hope that we could stop the mudslinging and just learn to “agree to disagree” or is that “just wishful thinking?”
I invite you to share your thoughts sans political statements. If you can, please offer some clues on how you will navigate these challenging days ahead as they become even more inflammatory.