Ketanji Brown Jackson: Making History

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was confirmed as the United States’ 116th Supreme Court Justice by a 53 to 47 vote in the U.S. Senate today. She will be seated as a Justice on the Court after Justice Stephen Breyer retires, which is expected this summer after the end of the Court’s current session.

“Ketanji Brown Jackson has made history and today feminists everywhere are celebrating. At last, long overdue: a brilliant African American woman will be seated on the Supreme Court,” said Eleanor Smeal, President of the Feminist Majority Foundation. “Judge Brown Jackson’s nomination and appointment gives hope and inspiration to millions of people. She is a wise and compassionate jurist in pursuit of equal justice under the law.”

In her opening testimony, Judge Brown Jackson said, “I hope that you will see how much I love our country and the Constitution, and the rights that make us free. I stand on the shoulders of many who have come before me, including Judge Constance Baker Motley, who was the first African American woman to be appointed to the federal bench and with whom I share a birthday. And like Judge Motley, I have dedicated my career to ensuring that the words engraved on the front of the Supreme Court building—’Equal Justice Under Law’ — are a reality and not just an ideal.”

New Year’s Eve Fire at Knoxville Planned Parenthood Ruled Arson

The fire that destroyed a Knoxville Planned Parenthood clinic on New Year’s Eve was ruled as “intentionally set” by the Knoxville Fire Department yesterday. According to the department, they were assisted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) in conducting their investigation and have “determined the fire to have been purposely set by an individual or individuals who, at this time, remain unidentified.”

The health center was undergoing a nearly-complete renovation and expansion at the time of the fire and was deemed a complete loss. “Our priority is to establish a safe operating site and reconvene services for our patients as soon as we possibly can. Although it will take time to rebuild, we are committed to our patients in East Tennessee and will not let this attack take away the essential health care services on which they rely, ” said Ashley Coffield, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Tennessee & North Mississippi. 

The clinic also experienced an attack on January 22, 2021 (the anniversary of Roe v. Wade), when, according to Planned Parenthood of Tennessee & North Mississippi, “an unidentified gunman fired a shotgun through the front doors of the health center.”

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