‘Institutional, ideological bias’: USPS to issue a Ruth Bader Ginsburg stamp – what about Antonin Scalia?

This year’s Supreme Court term will be opening on the first Monday of October, and to mark the event, the United States Postal Service (USPS) is issuing a “Forever” stamp honoring the late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, leaving some to wonder why Justice Antonin Scalia, her longtime friend, hasn’t received the same honor in the nearly eight years since his death.

“Honor an icon of American culture with this new Ruth Bader Ginsburg stamp,” the USPS urges its customers.

“She began her career as an activist lawyer fighting gender discrimination,” the post office states. “She went on to become a judge who was unafraid to disagree with her colleagues. Ginsburg gained a reputation as a respected voice for equal justice.”

“While it may not be surprising that the United States Postal Service will be serving up a bouquet to the Left,” according to Timothy Goeglein and Paul Batura of the Daily Signal, they say it is “regrettable” that Scalia, “her beloved friend and bench mate,” has been overlooked.

“[N]o such honor has been extended to acknowledge and celebrate the Supreme Court’s first Italian American and the nation’s most consequential legal mind of the last half-century,” Goeglein and Batura note.

“In announcing the stamp’s release, set for Oct. 2, the Postal Service lauded the Brooklyn native for her ‘groundbreaking contributions to justice, gender equality, and the rule of law.’ The post office’s PR department went on to say that ‘the stamp captures her enduring spirit and tireless dedication to upholding the principles of the Constitution,'” they write. “Never mind that those so-called constitutional principles regularly changed in Ginsburg’s mind according to the case before the high court.”

“By her standards,” the duo continues, “the United States Constitution was a living and breathing document—its words meant whatever she wanted them to mean in the moment.”

Goeglein and Batura called out the USPS’s quarterly catalog, the “Philatelic,” for its two-page spread promoting the new stamp.

“It’s reminiscent of Hollywood glamour magazine propaganda of another era but with a modern twist: In addition to postage, Ginsburg aficionados can also purchase notecards and even small notebooks emblazoned with the late justice’s image,” they write.

By ignoring Scalia, when, in addition to Ginsburg, the USPS has honored Justices Joseph Story, Louis Brandeis, Felix Frankfurter, William Brennan Jr., and Thurgood Marshall, the authors say the agency missed “a golden opportunity.”

“The longtime friendship that existed between Scalia and Ginsburg has been well documented. Diametrically opposed philosophically but thick-as-thieves personally, their camaraderie so beautifully represented the pluralistic ideals that have served our country so well for so long,” they write. “But no doubt due to its own institutional and ideological bias, the Postal Service has missed—by excluding Scalia, at least thus far—a golden opportunity to acknowledge not only the value of civility, but also the court’s diversity, given his family’s emigration from Italy.”

“Scalia’s fidelity to the Constitution and his groundbreaking ascent to the nation’s highest court makes him a worthy candidate to enjoy the imprimatur of the United States Postal Service,” Goeglein and Batura state. “‘Nino’ remains forever in the hearts and memories of Americans who revere the Founders’ words.”


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