The Marine Corps is in many ways counterintuitively progressive, although they are accurately viewed as the most culturally traditional of the US armed forces.
But while their uniforms and customs may remain nineteenth-century, that’s very much a surface veneer.
Corps leadership has long been flexible and cutting edge about military doctrine and social issues that impact the fighting force. The Corps, for example, had already thoroughly integrated racially while the Army was still resisting.
LGBT issues in the Corps are also surprisingly far advanced for an organization that it is so traditionally masculine.
Speaking of the Confederate Flag, the Corps got it right here: explicitly banning the flag as an expression of racism.
DoD took the coward’s way out, banning the Confederate flag by omission, which also banned the LGBT rainbow flag — falsely equivalating the two as controversial and unacceptable on military installations.
As usual for me with a comment, this is just an aside, not to take away from your excellent article, which I thank you for.