There’s a big story getting passed around in military circles and beyond from The New York Post that President Obama wants the Marines to start wearing “girly” caps.
The Post writer, Jeane MacIntosh, writes of a “plan by President Obama to create a ‘unisex’ look for the Corps, officials are on the verge of swapping out the Marines’ iconic caps — known as ‘covers’ — with a new version that some have derided as so ‘girly’ that they would make the French blush.”
As a Marine veteran who knows how these changes actually happen, I can tell you the story is 100% B.S. The bottom line: The President doesn’t involve himself in what troops happen to be wearing.
But just to make sure, I called Headquarters Marine Corps and a spokesperson confirmed that the process for making changes to Marine uniforms hasn’t changed since I last left the service in 2010.
Every year, a board (made up of senior enlisted Marines) meets and goes over things that they may want to change with uniforms. In 2007 for example, the board made a change that outlawed “sleeve” tattoos — and I don’t remember thinking that was all President George W. Bush’s fault.
“The President in no way, shape, or form directed the Marine Corps to change our uniform cover,” said Capt. Maureen Krebs, a spokesperson for the Marine Corps. “We’re looking for a new cover for our female Marines for the primary reason that the former manufacturer went out of business. The Marine Corps has zero intention of changing the male cover.”
If there’s someone to blame about a change in a uniform, the buck would stop at Marine Commandant Gen. James Amos, who has the final say.
To clarify, I made sure to ask whether President Obama had suddenly joined the uniform board of the Marine Corps.
“Not that I know of, but that would certainly be newsworthy,” Krebs said.
There’s plenty of things to nitpick with the Obama administration, but this isn’t even close to one of them.
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