Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a meme. Again.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote a long dissent in the Supreme Court's birth control decision Monday, which both conveyed the objections that many reproductive rights activists had with the opinion and served as a muse for Jonathan Mann.

Mann writes a song every single day and posts it on YouTube, and Monday's song adapted Ginsburg's words into a ditty.

It isn't the first time someone has translated Ginsburg's career into song.

Derrick Wang, who holds degrees in music and law, wrote the opera "Scalia/Ginsburg." He told The Washington Post last year how he decided to write a libretto inspired by the Supreme Court:

How did I get the idea for this? I was studying constitutional law and reading through case after case after Supreme Court case, and then suddenly my eyes alit on what I guess are the three magic words: Scalia, J., dissenting. And I read what came after that, and I thought, ‘This is the most dramatic thing I’ve ever read in law school.’

In counterpoint to that, on an opposing side on some of these issues was Justice Ginsburg, and she had her own style: lyrical, with a steely strength of its own and also very witty. So it was that dramatic counterpoint between these two styles of writing and these two points of view and then the discovery, of course, that [Scalia and Ginsburg] are actually good friends who spend lots of time together and go to the opera together. And I thought, this is an opera. That combination of conflict and friendship, I thought, was too tempting to resist.

Ginsburg liked it. She said last weekend, according to the Wall Street Journal's Law Blog, "that in one of her favorite scenes, Justice Scalia is 'locked up in a dark room for excessive dissenting, 'only to be startled by Justice Ginsburg, who crashes through a 'glass ceiling' to rescue him." Scalia has said he liked the play, too.

The Maryland Opera studio gave a reading of the opera last February. The program's interim director summed up the plot as, "In essence, Justice Ginsburg comes to save Justice Scalia when the stern statue makes him justify his life or be condemned to the maw of hell."

This isn't the first time Ruth Bader Ginsburg has inspired an Internet meme, either.

There is the Notorious RBG Tumblr run by a law student at New York University -- which featured the RBG dissent song Monday. They have T-shirts and GIFs.

There are also RBG-themed Buzzfeed posts. There are parody Twitter accounts. An acoustic YouTube song was inevitable.

Here are the lyrics (it isn't a direct transcription of the actual dissenting opinion -- Ginsburg did not mention "slut-shaming geezers" in her dissent, for instance):

Religious organizations exist
To foster the interests
Of persons subscribing to the same religious faith
Not so of for-profit corporations
Workers who sustain these operations
are not drawn from one religious community

It bears note that the cost of an IUD
Is nearly equivalent
To a month's full-time pay
For workers making minimum wage

Oh, the court I fear
Has ventured into a minefield
Full of slut-shaming geezers
And religious extremism
Oh, one thing's clear
This fight isn't over
We gotta stand together
For what we know is right

Any decision to use contraceptives
Is not propelled by government
It's the woman's autonomous choice, informed by her doctor
Approving some religious claims
While deeming others unworthy
Could be perceived as favoring one religion over another

Would the exemption extend to blood transfusions
Antidepressasnts and anesthesia
Pills coated with gelatin and vaccinations?

Oh, the court I fear
Has ventured into a minefield
Full of slut-shaming geezers
And religious extremism
Oh, but one thing's clear
This fight isn't over
We gotta stand together
For what we know is right

 

Jaime Fuller reports on national politics for "The Fix" and Post Politics. She worked previously as an associate editor at the American Prospect, a political magazine based in Washington, D.C.
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