The late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg ('50), Senators Chuck Schumer ('67) and Bernie Sanders ('59), and my late father, Barney Schulte ('32), are graduates of Brooklyn's once-great James Madison High School.
In 1986, after I wrote several articles about the 25 Jewish Nobel laureates who graduated from New York City public high schools, my father phoned his alma mater's principal to inform him that the recipient of the Medicine prize that year, Stanley Cohen ('39), was a JMHS alumnus.
One year later, he again contacted the principal that another alumnus, Robert Solow ('40 ), was awarded the Nobel in Economics.
Three other JMHS alumni – Gary Becker ('48, Economics, '92) Martin Perl ('42, Physics '95) and Arthur Ashkin ('40, Physics, 2018) – won a Nobel Prize after my father's death in 1989.
Justice Bader Ginsburg, who died on Sept. 18, served for 40 years as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and the Supreme Court, appointed by, respectively, Democratic Presidents Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton.
Sen, Schumer, a Harvard Law School graduate, has held elected office in the New York State Legislature and Congress for 45 years.
The 79-year-old Sen. Sanders has served as the mayor of Burlington, Vermont, and a congressman and senator from Vermont for four decades.
Unencumbered by either term or age limits, Bader Ginsburg, Schumer and Sanders aren't the only Democrats who have had an insatiable thirst for power and public adulation.
Others include: Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Maxine Waters, Barack and Michelle Obama, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo; California's 82-year-old former Gov. Jerry "Moonbeam" Brown (1975-83, 2011-19); and 80-year-old Pat Leahy, Vermont's other senator who was first elected in 1974.
Like Frank Sinatra and Willie Mays, whom my father would take me to watch at Manhattan's Polo Grounds in the mid-1950s, many leading Democrats can't accept that their health, talents and intellects have irreversibly declined, and their late-career performances have been genuinely disgraceful.
In a healthy democracy, as opposed to totalitarian regimes, as demonstrated by Presidents George Washington and Harry Truman, both decorated U.S. Army veterans, leaders must know when it is time to pass the baton.
My father, a decorated combat veteran of Gen. George Patton's crack Sixth Armored Division, once told me that the reason the U.S. Army vanquished the mighty German Wehrmacht is that if the sergeant was wounded or killed, the corporal immediately stepped up and competently led his troops. This applied throughout the U.S. Army chain of command up to generals and the commander-in-chief.
While Bader Ginsburg, Schumer, Sanders, and my father are Jewish Americans, he certainly would have condemned the two senators' cowardice in not battling the virulent anti-Semitism that has metastasized in the Democratic Party since the late 1960s.
In a recent radio interview, Alan Dershowitz, another high-powered octogenarian lawyer from Brooklyn and long-time Democrat, blasted his party's leaders for lacking the "guts to reject the anti-Semitism in their party." He also praised the Republican Party for purging anti-Semites from its ranks.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and husband Martin Ginsburg, a high-powered corporate lawyer, were pioneers among the Democratic couples-lawyers who have dominated the party since Bill Clinton's plurality victory in 1992. He won only 43% of the popular vote, incumbent President George H.W. Bush took 37% and Ross Perot 19%.
Martin Ginsburg, Perot's long-time lawyer, encouraged his third-party candidacy, and his wife was nominated by President Clinton for a seat on the Supreme Court in late June 1993 and was almost-unanimously confirmed seven weeks later.
During the 1992 campaign, Bill Clinton promised a "2-for-1 presidency," in a bare-knuckled strategy to win the female vote.
Other top Democratic married lawyer couples include: Barack and Michelle Obama, and Democratic Vice Presidential candidate Kamala Harris and husband Douglas Emhoff.
Recently, former First Lady Michelle Obama revealingly complained that "when we were in the White House, we could've never gotten away with some of the stuff that's going on now."
Not surprisingly, seven of the eight Democratic presidential candidates since 1984 are lawyers: Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis, Bill Clinton, John Kerry, Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Joe Biden.
The losing Democratic candidate in 2000, Al Gore, dropped out of Vanderbilt Law School in 1976 to run for Congress.
Conversely, during the last 36 years among Republican presidential nominees, only Bob Dole and Mitt Romney are lawyers.
Unquestionably, there has been no diversity of professions among Democratic presidential candidates since 1984.
My father would not have supported Justice Bader Ginsberg and Senators Schumer and Sanders just because they are Jewish and attended the same distinguished Brooklyn high school.
Similarly, on Nov. 3, I suspect that the overwhelming majority of Americans will vote for president and vice president based on the candidates' competence, character and mental and physical agility, and not their religious, racial, gender or ethnic identities.
Finally, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a strong advocate for women in the military as both civil-rights lawyer and Supreme Court justice, will be buried next week at Arlington National Cemetery, where 13 other Supreme Court justices and her husband Martin rest eternally in peace. As a young married couple in 1954 to 1956, she and her husband, who was on active duty in the U.S. Army, lived at Ft. Sill, Oklahoma, where America's artillerists have been trained since 1869.
Mark Schulte is a retired New City schoolteacher and mathematician who has written extensively about science and the history of science. Read Mark Schulte's Report's — More Here.
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