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Christopher Wallace was a legendary rapper and Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a famous Supreme Court justice, but they were both "Notorious."
C.J. Wallace, 23, the son of the late rapper known as The Notorious B.I.G., told the
3rd hour of TODAY
Thursday that his father would've been happy to share the "notorious" title with his fellow Brooklyn native, who was dubbed "The Notorious RBG" late in life.
"Brooklyn, New York, represents no fear, confidence, and speaking your truth, and my dad and Justice Ginsburg lived those words," Wallace told TODAY in a statement. "I think he would be honored to share the 'Notorious' title with her, and it's up to us to honor their legacies by continuing to fight for equality and justice for all by voting and getting into good trouble."
The hip-hop icon, who was also known as
, was murdered at 24 in a 1997 drive-by shooting. Ginsburg, who was given the affectionate nickname
The Notorious RBG
in a play on the rapper's name,
died on Sept. 18 at 87
Justice Ginsburg becomes first woman to lie in state at the Capitol
A famous photo of The Notorious B.I.G. wearing a gold crown was even re-created with Ginsburg's image and appeared on the cover of the 2015 book "Notorious RBG: The Life and Times of Ruth Bader Ginsburg" by Irin Carmon and Shana Knizhnik.
spoke about Ginsburg's legacy
on TODAY Monday.
"Using her voice to stand up against attacks on democracy as she saw them was what captured the attention of so many young people who were also really hungry to see a woman in a position of power who wasn't just using that power for herself and pulling the ladder up, but rather looking to make 'we the people' real for people who had been left out of it for so long," she said.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg remembered by co-author of ‘Notorious RBG’
Sept. 21, 2020
Ginsburg spoke in 2017 about the
origins of her nickname
and her connection to "Big Poppa" rapper.
"I think about how this Notorious RBG was created," she said. "People ask me, don't you feel uncomfortable with a name like the Notorious B.I.G.? Why should I feel uncomfortable? We have a lot in common. And first and foremost, we were both born and bred in Brooklyn, New York."
The nickname was coined on a Tumblr blog by Knizhnik, who was a second-year law student at New York University at the time. She was upset about the 2013 Supreme Court decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which held that a key part of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was no longer constitutional.
"She was angry, and then it came to her that anger is a useless emotion, it doesn't win any friends or make any changes, so instead of being angry, she would do something positive" Ginsburg said. "And the positive thing she did was to put on that blog the announcement of my dissenting opinion in the Shelby County case, and then it took off from there."
Ginsburg's legacy has been celebrated since her death, from luminaries around the world
to her former law clerks
lining up on the steps of the Supreme Court
in her honor.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg remembered by mourners as she lies in repose
Sept. 24, 2020
The Notorious B.I.G.'s legacy also lives on more than 20 years after his death, as he's set to be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Also, the plastic gold crown
he wore in a famous photo shoot
sold for $594,750 at a Sotheby's auction earlier this month.
"For it still to relate so much 20 plus years later, it's just insane," Wallace told Sheinelle Jones during an appearance Thursday's 3rd hour of TODAY.
Wallace, who is the rapper's son with singer Faith Evans, is also celebrating his father's work with his new album "Ready to Dance," which features dance remixes of his father's songs from his iconic "Ready to Die" album.
"I've always wanted to stay away from doing anything with my dad's music unless it was extremely creative and outside the box, so this was that," Wallace said.