The Power of Three

| Oct 4, 2010

It’s the first Monday in October, and the Supreme Court convenes today for a new term. But this term is different from all others because, today for the first time ever, three women are serving together on our highest court. It is significant — momentous — that one-third of the Court is female, even though that fraction does not yet represent our proportion of the population. But it is a sign of progress that was once almost unimaginable for me and most of my peers.

Elena Kagan’s appointment is about more than just numbers. Her appointment brings us closer to the day when it is no longer surprising to see a woman on the Supreme Court or in other positions of power, closer to the day when powerful female role models are the norm.

I’ve known Justice Kagan for many years, and I know she will make us all proud. As she rules on cases, she will have the chance to demonstrate her towering intellect, fairness, independence, and fierce commitment to justice for all. I know that she will continue to be an inspiration to me and to all of us who strive for justice.

So I look forward to this new Supreme Court term, and to seeing three female justices together on our highest court. So today, we celebrate our new Supreme Court Justice and tomorrow, we continue to work toward the day when we there are four — or even five! — female justices and, someday soon, true equality in all branches of government and our society.