Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson Will Help Change This Country For The Better

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, as photographed by Lelanie Foster.

We’ve gone through a lot the past couple of months- probably even more than we know. Conservative Supreme Court Justices have lied about their positions, their dedication to upholding precedents, and have, with a flick of a pen, gleefully eliminated the rights of people with child-bearing capability, limiting what medications are available, and destroying any progress we’ve made on climate change, along with allowing guns to be carried without a permit and threats of revisiting historic landmarks like interracial and gay marriage. It’s bleak. The danger to BIPOC, queer, and disabled individuals is rising even higher than it already was, and I am more horrified daily as justices move to stifle the rights of anyone who disagrees with their worldview. This isn’t the Handmaid’s Tale, however – these rights have been conditional for centuries, put into law only after uprisings, riots, and sacrifices from the people these issues have affected the most – BIPOC, queer, disabled individuals.

And now, it seems their hard work has been overcome by corrupt, morally decrepit individuals who would love nothing more than to see the further rise of white nationalism, suffocating control, and even more hardships for the marginalized groups who have worked so hard for our freedoms. However, there is a little hope within me today because of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, the very first black woman to become a Supreme Court Justice.

This country has taken over two hundred years to swear in a black woman to the Supreme Court. It’s shameful it has taken so long. Many are lauding the decision, saying that the court makeup now looks more like America and that President Biden has made good on one of his campaign promises, while below the surface, tensions are seething as it remains to be seen where Judge Jackson will land on a variety of issues, though of course being nominated by a Democrat would lead one to believe the judge will be fairly liberal, though how she and the other liberal or independent judges on the Supreme Court will be able to push forward anything positive with the chokehold the conservative justices have over the court at this moment remains to be seen.

That being said, I do believe Judge Jackson’s dedication and experience are vital for the country as we navigate through these horrific setbacks. We need someone who has been a public servant for decades. We need her guidance. Without someone like Judge Jackson, we are under the control of old cisgender men who would like nothing better than to create a world in their image – where they can do whatever they want, and we can do very little about it. Judge Jackson can, and I hope, be part of the change we desperately need. 

If this decision has angered or upset you, please sit with yourself and reflect on why. Why do you think a black woman does not need to be part of the Supreme Court? What reasoning do you give for wanting the court to continue making these reprehensible choices that will affect so many lives (and, unfortunately, cause so many deaths)? Which side of history will you be on?

We support Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson and her appointment to the Supreme Court. We believe she will play an integral part in shaping our future for at least a few decades. We hope she will do right by the American people, especially the marginalized groups who have suffered since colonists landed in North America. We do not want a white America. We do not want a conservative America. We do not want a religious America. We want rights and freedoms that apply to everyone, with no exceptions. Judge Jackson, we stand beside you and congratulate you on this well-deserved appointment. We look forward to seeing what you do with the power you wield. Please use it wisely.