The U.S. Navy will honor Ruth Bader Ginsburg by naming a new ship after the late Supreme Court Justice, confirming the choice Thursday as a step towards “equality” and the desire to “eliminate gender discrimination across the Department of the Navy.”
Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro used a statement to announce the future John Lewis-class replenishment oiler.
“As we close out women’s history month, it is my absolute honor to name the next T-AO after the honorable Ruth Bader Ginsburg,” Del Toro said. “She is a historic figure who vigorously advocated for women’s rights and gender equality.”
The choice of Ginsburg, who died in 2020 aged 87, follows a new U.S. Navy tradition of naming ships after civil rights activists, as Breitbart News reported.
The first oiler in the class takes its name from the late civil rights activist and former Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) who died in 2020.
As well as Lewis, U.S. politician Harvey Milk, former California Gov. Earl Warren, former Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, abolitionist and suffragist Lucy Stone, abolitionist and women’s rights activist Sojourner Truth, Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and now Ginsburg will also be so honored.
“As secretary of the Navy, it is my aim to ensure equality and eliminate gender discrimination across the Department of the Navy. [Ginsburg] is instrumental to why we now have women of all backgrounds, experiences and talents serving within our ranks, side by side with their male sailor and Marine counterparts,” said Del Toro, who also named Ginsburg’s daughter, Jane Ginsburg, as the ship’s sponsor.
Ginsberg was nominated by then-President Bill Clinton to the nation’s highest bench for which she was confirmed in 1993 and served for 27 years until her death.
She was the second woman to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court behind Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who was appointed in 1981 by former President Ronald Reagan.
General Dynamics NASSCO began construction of the John Lewis-class oilers in San Diego in 2018 under a $3.2 billion Navy contract.
The T-AO is a new class designed to replace the United States’ Henry J. Kaiser-class vessels.
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