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Legendary golfer Jack Nicklaus blasted the “cancel culture” that he says caused the PGA to yank the championship from Trump National Golf Course in Bedminster.
This week, the pro golfer who won a record 18 major championships said that the tournament should not have been moved to Southern Hills in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Nicklaus said he likes PGA chief Seth Waugh but added that Waugh foolishly bowed to the cancel culture with the decision.
“Seth didn’t need this job. He took the job because he thought he could give the PGA of America some good guidance,” Nicklaus told Fire Pit Collective. “And I think he’s doing that. But this move is cancel culture. Donald Trump may be a lot of things, but he loves golf and he loves this country. He’s a student of the game and a formidable figure in the game. What he does in the future in golf will depend on what the cancel culture will allow him to do.”
(ANDY BUCHANAN/Getty Images)
In January of last year, Waugh complained that a “political situation not of our making” forced him to pull the tournament from Trump’s course. He called the situation an “existential” threat and said he “had no choice.”
“We’re fiduciaries for our members, for the game, for our mission and for our brand,” he explained at the time. “And how do we best protect that? Our feeling was given the tragic events of Wednesday that we could no longer hold it at Bedminster. The damage could have been irreparable. The only real course of action was to leave.”
But the Trump Organization said the PGA had “no right to terminate” the agreement.
The PGA arrived at an undisclosed legal settlement over the mess by December of that year.
“The PGA of America (“PGA”) and The Trump Organization today announce that they have reached a settlement resolving their ongoing dispute regarding the PGA’s decision to cancel its contract with Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey to host the 2022 PGA Championship,” a PGA press release stated.
The PGA also praised the Trump organization:
“The Trump Organization’s contribution to the golf community is appreciated. We are thankful the company employs hundreds of dedicated PGA Professionals and consistently gives back to the golf community through hosting charitable events and sponsoring junior golf programs. As stated in 2014 when announced, Trump Bedminster is a major championship-worthy golf course and in a portfolio along with some of the finest private and public golf courses anywhere in the world.”
The statement ended with a few words from Eric Trump, Executive Vice President of the Trump Organization:
“We have great respect for the work of the PGA. Over the past 20+ years, we have enjoyed working with the PGA to deliver to our club members and the public some of the greatest golf experiences anywhere in the world. We look forward to continuing to support the mission of the PGA and its Professionals, who are the best in the golf industry.”
Trump himself added that the settlement was “A wonderful conclusion for all. Thank you to the PGA of America!”
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