“It’s phenomenal, the amount of support it’s gotten – how many people have re-Tweeted and re-blogged and re-posted and liked and shared and commented and voted...I think I would have laughed if someone said that in five years I was going to be in a competition to be on the cover of Men’s Health magazine.This story makes me hopeful. I've read some random internet comments about this story and they are overwhelmingly positive. A few are making the argument that he isn't breaking any stereotypes at all as his look and style are, in essence themselves, a stereotype of masculinity. Legit argument but I think we can deal with that at a later date. I think, at the moment, we need to celebrate the fact that barriers may be coming down. We live in a world where violence against trans individuals happens with astronomical frequency. There is still a great deal of judgement and lack of understanding and compassion. But there was a time when this wouldn't even have been a story. It wouldn't have been a story because it wouldn't have been a possibility. But now, well, this IS something. It is forward movement. I look forward to that day in the future when this will once again fail to be a story. It won't be a story because it will just be. It won't be a transgender man on the cover or a cisgender man, it will just be a man.
I want to break the stereotype of what a man should or shouldn't be. I think it would blow minds. I think it would be so affirming to young kids who are lost right now and depressed to see somebody on a magazine, to see if I can do it, they can do it too.”
Aydian Dowling (27), is in the lead for Men's Health's "Ultimate Guy Search." If he maintains his significant lead, he will be the first transgender cover model in the magazine's history. Dowling told People about the outpouring of support he has received since he entered the contest.