The U.S. Marines is following orders. U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus told the Marines to start making titles more female friendly, i.e,, more genderless. This is especially important as the first female has signed up for the Marines as an Infantry trooper.
Some people will no doubt lambast this as political correctness gone awry. “What difference does a word make?” As I’ve been a journalist, an investigator, and have some very basic training in psychology, I can tell you it makes a world of difference. All of these professions are trained to listen very carefully to the exact wording a person uses. The precise choice of words is key to understanding a person’s thinking–especially those things that they’re hiding from you or from themselves.
I still struggle after all these years of knowing nurses that were men, even being friends with one and acting with another, to think of one as a nurse and not as a “male nurse.” Younger people who grew up hearing nurses of both sexes called “nurses” likely don’t have that problem.
See terms that are changing (and those that aren’t, such as “rifleman”), here.
Thanks to Herr Bookmonger for providing the link and suggesting a form of the title.