(ETH) – History was just made for Sports Illustrated as for the first time in the 57-year history of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, a male model has been considered to be on the pages of the annual publication.
According to the report, Lewis Freese was named as one of the coveted finalist spots, which has been traditionally reserved for females in previous years of the publication. Freese was named one of the 15 finalists to be considered for the 2021 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue defeating thousands of other models in clinching the spot.
The 21-year-old is a full-time student from Minneapolis. Freese claims that he is unsure what gender he is. “Going through this process I have learned so much about myself and most importantly my identity,” Freese said in an Instagram post.
“To be honest, I have no clue where my gender really falls at the moment but all I can do is take things day by day and share every moment with all of you.” Freese takes to social media where he encourages his followers, regardless of their gender or sexuality, to assist him in fighting “boundaries” by putting pronouns in their social media biographies to help “normalize gender fluidity.”
“I want to work with Sports Illustrated so we can stop those who judge, criticize, or hate on those who are choosing to be themselves,” Freese stated. “No longer should a man or woman feel they need to fit certain gender standards, no longer should stereotypes exist for sexual orientations, no longer should people hide their authentic character.”