"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Thursday, 3 May 2012

There Was A Glitch

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Here's Something":

It's post like this commenter's that fuel inaccurate information on the internet....

Golf courses can be commercial "if" they are public. If the course is a private club that charges dues, it is considered differently in the eyes of the government (not for profit non-share captial corporation). These organizations will have bylaws, boards of directors and annual meetings.

Public or semi-private courses are commercial activities.

The way the club has been incorporated dictates the structure. Each type of operation will have different taxation burdens.

I am curious as to why you want or care what the clubs pay in taxes. You have to remember the value is based on it's commercial value and in some cases these courses are not on prime land that can be used for anything else. They are also zoned for the use they have and re-zoning is not a painless exercise. I am sure they pay their good share.

Augusta National does not ban women. I was there last month at the Masters with 3 female members of my family and I saw a lot of females there. There has also been women playing the course. Duke University's golf team (men and women) have used the course in the past.

Augusta National however, does not allow a woman to be a member. Traditionally the CEO of IBM has been given a membership to the club. Given the rules of the club, they did not extend that to IBM's CEO. The real impact to golf is that IBM is a sponsor to PGA golf events. Augusta does not really care about their sponsorship however because they buy blocks of TV time and the event is shown without any commercials. Until you have been there, you can call it ignorant wisdom, but this is a place that is trying to retain values that this club was founded on. As a private club, they can do whatever they want in my opinion.

Women are not allowed to be members of the Royal and Ancient in Britain. They can however be a member and play the courses at St. Andrews (including the Old Course).

One thing that North Americans run into when attempting to play in Britain is that some courses (St Andrews included) require a validated handicap. Is that discriminating? It certainly keeps the hacks off the course.

I didn't ignore the foregoing. I tried to publish it and for reasons unknown to me it wasn't happening.

So now you have it as a post with my apologies.

And thank you for a very informative comment
I just have one query. What were the values the Augusta  National  was founded on that compelled them to exclude women from membership?

Not that I want to join I'm just curious as to what "values" they might be.

I can think of many  woman situations where men might not be
welcome  or even want to be there. But I don't think I could  argue  them  as  a value principle.


Anonymous said...

Like it or not.....

Augusta National Golf Club is known to be a socially traditional institution. It is a place where traditions and the integrity of the game are zealously guarded. In prepared remarks before the 2010 Masters, Chairman Billy Payne had harsh words for Tiger Woods, saying the world's top-ranked golfer disappointed everyone with his sex scandals and did not live up to expectations as a role model.

Augusta National Golf Club has about 300 members at any given time. Membership is strictly by invitation; there is no application process. Membership is believed to cost between $10,000 and $30,000 and annual dues were estimated in 2009 to be less than $10,000 per year.

"Our membership is single gender just as many other organizations and clubs all across America. These would include Junior Leagues, sororities, fraternities, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and countless others. And we all have a moral and legal right to organize our clubs the way we wish."

Anonymous said...

WOW ! Enormous print ! Is Stephanie visiting?

Anonymous said...

I do not wish to get into a protracted discussion about golf or golf clubs.

Having spent many months in London spread over several decades I have been invited to five private Gentlemen's Clubs for a lunch or supper. These clubs are British institutions, some with a history dating back several hundred years. They are obviously elitist, quite intentionally so. The one's I visited DO NOT ALLOW women to cross the front thresh hold. Some clubs do. There are Boards of Directors and Rules Committees and a charter and By-Laws. There are also annual dues and a lengthy waiting list. Titled members abound.

These clubs all occupy some of the most expensive land on a square foot basis in the world. Are they commercial? Some would argue they are. Others would say they have become institutions, living history.

There are different forms of private golf club. Some have a limit on the number of memberships that were created originally and that number is not allowed to increase. It is only when an existing member wishes to sell his/her membership that it can then be offered to the next name on a waiting list. Similarly, if a member dies the estate can offer the membership. A limited membership private club can come with an extremely high cost, as completely apart from annual dues, members can be called upon to meet special assessments when extraordinary repair or capital items are required.

Other private clubs have expanding membership numbers, and their cachet is somewhat less satisfactory. One never knows who will be allowed to join.

By-laws, boards and annual meetings do not guarantee anything but occasions for some individuals to lord it over others. I have been there.

To state that a private golf course is not a commercial enterprise is somewhat disingenuous and to state that they are often not on prime land that can be used for for anything else belies the writer's ignorance of the majority of Aurora's golf courses. Even the course at Beacon Hall contains 80 condominium units, without which the golf club could never have gotten off the ground.This private course married to a commercial component allowed golf to be played on a beautiful course.

There is always a commercial potential to any private club, golf or other, or they would have never been built in the first place.

With respect to the rules relating to women at Augusta National, frankly I don't give a damn what they do in Georgia, be they allowed as guests or members.

The Master tournament occupies four days of the year, just over one percent. The three major American horse races occupy just three, just under one percent.

Do you prefer to watch a bunch of ill-clothed men with logos on their shirts, hats and golf bags meander through and spoil some really beautiful scenery, or would you rather watch some stylishly dressed and very attractive men and women focus on one of nature's grandest achievements, the thoroughbred horse?

Anonymous said...

Of course the relevance of British golf courses and their land value versus Beacon Hall is about the same as to Augusta National.

Any land occupied by a golf course can be turned into a commercially viable development. Whether there is the will and investment to do so is the question.

There is also a number of "private" golf clubs in our area that have no value to the member (non-equity). The main culprit of this is Clublink.

So while we are after the amount of tax golf courses pay, why don't we do the same for all of the stinking horse farms in the area?

I guess the writer at 1:16 has not watched golf latly. There are no "ill-clothed" men any longer. And I would rather watch men (or women) walk a golf course than watch a growth-stunted little person beat the tar out of a horse so that it's owner can make money. At least the golfers earn their payday with their skills.