Serena Williams knows exactly what women need to hear right now.
In an emotional open letter posted to Instagram, Williams delivered a feminist pick-me-up that speaks to women of all ages, colors and creeds who are striving for equality in their fields.
“When I was growing up, I had a dream,” Williams wrote. “I’m sure you did too. My dream wasn’t like that of an average kid, my dream was to be the best tennis player in the world. Not the best ‘female’ tennis player in the world.”
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She continued, “But as we know, too often women are not supported enough or are discouraged from choosing their path. I hope together we can change that. For me, it was a question of resilience. What others marked as flaws or disadvantages about myself — my race, my gender — I embraced as fuel for my success. I never let anything or anyone define me or my potential. I controlled my future.”
Williams went on to talk about what’s frustrating about the pay gap that still remains between men and women in the U.S.
“As we know, women have to break down many barriers on the road to success,” Williams continued. “One of those barriers is the way we are constantly reminded we are not men, as if it is a flaw. People call me one of the ‘world’s greatest female athletes.’ Do they say LeBron is one of the world’s best male athletes? Is Tiger? Federer? Why not? They are certainly not female. We should never let this go unchallenged. We should always be judged by our achievements, not by our gender.”
Williams’ message comes at a time when we all really need it. President-elect Donald Trump has openly displayed his misogyny since he began his campaign. The next four years are going to be a hard fight for equality for women. Let Williams’ post be your inspiration.
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