ERNIE AND TRUMP IS WRONG
Ernie Els golfing with Donald Trump ... wrong on so many levels. Really Ernie. Having lived through apartheid you felt the need to endorse Trump’s right-wing extremist policies by playing golf with your “friend, this amazing businessman, and doing this was special.”?
When Ernie came under fire for this, his response:“Go eff yourselves.” I wonder what action, if any, the tours will take against Ernie? How will the sponsors of the SA Open react to Ernie associating himself with Trump?
All Ernie’s amazing work on and off the golf course is being tarnished by his association with Trump, without questioning Trump’s actions.
It is a slap-in-the-face from the golfing world to the liberals and progressive among us. It adds to the stigma of golf being regarded as an elitist sport.While most top sportsmen are protesting and criticising Trump, golfers seem to be endorsing him.This does nothing to take the game forward and appeal to a bigger crowd.And it also goes against the PGA Tour who are doing everything to distance themselves from the new president by not using Trump owned/associated courses and moving to other venues. Ismail Jassat, Centurion, Gauteng Trump being a passionate golfer, and owner of numerous golf courses, is going to put the game in the spotlight during his presidency. Nonetheless, it is surprising how much heat has been directed at Els and Rory McIlroy for playing golf with the Donald, compared to Tiger Woods, who was first in line in December.The reality is that most PGA Tour members like Trump and would have voted for him. Rich American golfers, men and women, are nearly all Republican in their political beliefs.
But should non-American golfers, with no political allegiances, shun an invite to play with Trump? If you like the guy as a golfing buddy, and someone interesting to chat to, why would you? Els was not eligible to vote in the US election, yet he has no gripes about Trump and enjoys the fact he is “a proper golfer”. He may or may not be comfortable with Trump’s policies, but it is no crime to have alternate views about the world today, and Els is no hypocrite.The PGA Tour might be able to avoid taking tournaments to Trump courses, but can hardly sanction any of their members for associating with the man.
Interestingly, the US Golf Association and LPGA are going ahead with holding the US Women’s Open in July at Trump National Bedminister, one of the Donald’s courses in New Jersey. The venue was chosen some years ago when Trump was just an abrasive businessman. Trump may be at the trophy presentation.The R&A are also faced with hosting the Open Championship at Trump Turnberry, one of the courses on their rota, although the earliest that could evidently happen would be in 2024, by which time Trump will likely have disappeared from the political landscape.