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Late Supreme Court justice’s family, friends slam 2024 RBG Award honoree choices

Late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s family and friends aren’t pleased with the nominees for this year’s RBG Award honorees, which include Rupert Murdoch, Elon Musk and Martha Stewart.

In a statement provided to The Washington Post, the Ginsburg family said the Dwight D. Opperman Foundation’s plan to give the award to conservative billionaires was “an affront to the memory of our mother and grandmother.”

Originally established to recognize “women of distinction,” the foundation will present the award at a gala at the Library of Congress on April 13.

Without naming any honoree specifically, family of the late liberal justice said in its statement to the Post that the foundation has “strayed far from the original mission of the award and from what Justice Ginsburg stood for.”

“Her legacy is one of deep commitment to justice and to the proposition that all persons deserve what she called ‘equal citizenship stature’ under the Constitution,” the family’s statement said. “She was a singularly powerful voice for the equality and empowerment of women, including their ability to control their own bodies.”

Trevor Morrison, a former clerk for Ginsburg and former dean of the New York University School of Law, wrote to the foundation’s chair, saying he found the list of honorees “deeply worrisome” that they chose people who “exhibit none of the values” that Ginsburg built her career on.

First established in 2020 as a recognition solely for women, previous recipients of the RBG Award have included Queen Elizabeth II, singer Barbra Streisand and fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg.

In addition to conservative media mogul Murdoch as well as Tesla CEO and X owner Musk, this year’s award will also be given to Sylvester Stallone and Michael Milken.

In a statement, Opperman Foundation chair Julie Opperman said that Ginsburg “fought not only for women but for everyone.”

“Going forward, to embrace the fullness of Justice Ginsburg’s legacy, we honor both women and men who have changed the world by doing what they do best,” Opperman said.

Ginsburg died in 2020 at age 87. Her family called for the foundation to change the award recipients in honor of what would have been the justice’s 91st birthday Friday. The foundation said it had no response to the calls to amend the award, the Post reported.

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