Yesterday the US Navy announced what it is calling a “large cultural change”, with the elimination of 91 enlisted ratings titles. Navy Times explains in Navy scuttles sailors’ enlisted rating titles in huge career shake-up
Sailors will no longer be identified by their job title, say, Fire Controlman 1st Class Joe Sailor, effective immediately. Instead, that would be Petty Officer 1st Class Joe Sailor.
Sailors past and present have longstanding and deep love of the titles that have defined their Navy lives. All of these now belong to the history books.
Two thirds of the way into the article the Navy Times finally explains that this is all about making the Navy more gender neutral:
It began by a directive from Mabus to find gender-neutral rating titles that stripped them of the word “man,” in an effort to be more inclusive to women sailors who make up an increasing size of the force.
Secretary Mabus, you may recall, tried to have male Marines wear female caps three years ago.
All of this is entirely to be expected, and this is only the beginning. Women pushing to enter male spaces fall into two categories. A small number of women sincerely want to experience manly pride, and these women are very protective of the masculine nature of the institutions they enter. A much larger number recognizes that they can’t experience manly pride, and therefore sets out to ensure that men can’t either.
The second group is the one that inevitably takes control, and will forever agitate to mark the space as feminine. The best way to conceptualize this compulsion is an overwhelming desire to put a pink bow on everything associated with the space (men, machines, uniforms, etc). We can see this symbolically with the elimination of masculine job titles used for hundreds of years, and we can see it more literally in the placement of a giant pink bow on the flight deck of the amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard: