That’s right folks, in the year 2012, there is still a golf club that finds it normal to let grown men with trucker hats shout “in the hole” at men referred to as “Tiger”, “Walrus”, “Golden Bear” and “The shark”, but unacceptable to let women swing a club in anger at the same course.
The issue of women members came to the fore when it was revealed that the CEO of IBM, Virginia Rometty, had not been granted membership of the club.
IBM has been a long-time sponsor of the tournament, with the four previous male CEOs all invited to become members shortly after assuming their position.
In the build-up to the US Masters last week, the president of Augusta National, Billy Payne, refused to speculate on the likelihood of Rometty becoming a member, stating that all decisions on membership are private.
The stance of Augusta National in confusing 2012 with 1912 drew the ire of many, including US President Barack Obama and employment lawyers.
“It is time for this type of discrimination to end,” said David Scher, the head of the Washington DC-based law firm The Employment Law Group. “It serves no purpose other than to make it harder for women to succeed.”
Augusta National Golf Club is not known for its progressive policies. African American members at the private club were only allowed in 1990 and in 2002 the former chairman of Augusta, “Hootie” Johnson (I am not making this up) had a running battle with the National Council of Women’s Organizations about female members.
Folklaw always thought Michael Douglas had a point in Falling Down when he remarked that the land built for private golf courses should be available for all to enjoy.
While it is ridiculous Rometty is not able to be a member at Augusta, we reckon her time is spent more wisely in the water, pursuing her favoured sport of scuba diving, rather than hanging out with a few hundred dinosaurs above ground trying to hit a small white ball.
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