Marlins tend to lend themselves to the "tactical lever gun" a bit better than the Winchesters because of the closed top action and sight mounting potential. But it has been done, so I don't know why folks are so shocked at the idea. The Henry when it came out during the War Between the States was essentially a tactical lever action rifle. The big disadvantage is the slow process for loading, and unloading. Other than that folks could do a lot worse.
Of course there are tasteful iterations out there:
And there are executions of the concept that look like something a raccoon shat: