Classes are gender locked?

I was interested in checking this game out since it is free to play. Then I discovered that all the classes I typically enjoy playing in MMOs force you to play a female character. What is the rationale for not giving players the choice of what gender their character is?

Yes, classes are locked by gender.

Some of the specs within the classes are gender locked too. For instance, the Male Martial Artist only gets one spec to pick from, Striker…disappointing for sure.