At a time when the world is seeing a rise in hate crimes, racist speech, and misogynistic barriers for women in many fields, some of the world’s top athletes are delivering a message of equality.

Tennis star Serena Williams, basketball heroes LeBron James and Kevin Durant, and US gymnast Gabby Douglas are a few of the athletes featured in Nike’s new ad focusing on diversity, reminding us: “Equality has no boundaries.”

The ad, which features more female athletes than male, also include soccer star Megan Rapinoe, an advocate of LGBT rights who is openly gay, and Dalilah Muhammad, Olympic gold medalist in track and field and a Muslim woman who overcame her own hurdles off the field.

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After questioning, “Is this the land history promised?” the ad quickly jumps into an empowering message on the equality between athletes on the field who are defined not by their race or religion but by their actions. That equality, the ad says, should make it off the field as well.

A scene from the ad counters shows Douglas standing strong in front of a judicial building that emblazoned with the founding principle of the American justice system: “Equal justice under the law.”

In the background, Alicia Keys belts Sam Cooke’s song, “A Change Is Gonna Come,” with the message that equality is attainable.

In a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the video, athletes shared their thoughts on equality.

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“We all have a purpose in the life, and in order for us to be as great as we can be as a nation, as a world, we all have to feel empowered,”James said.

“Being a Muslim woman, being a black woman, just being a woman in general, we all have so many things already fighting against us. So it’s important to be that voice for someone else,” said Muhammad.

“It makes you realize these monumental figures are standing behind this cause because it’s real, and it's something that pertains to our families and everyone’s families around the world,” said Victor Cruz, NFL player for the New York Giants.

Overall, it’s a powerful reminder that we should all define others by their actions.

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Demand Equity

Nike Released a Stirring Ad on Equality That You Need to See

By Meghan Werft