Famed All-male Golf Club Admits Two Women
Famed All-male Golf Club Admits Two Women, Condoleezza Rice and another powerful female break the gender barrier at Augusta National. Augusta National admitting Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore is less than it appears, Billy Payne looked uncomfortable and upset.
On the eve of April’s Masters, the Chairman of the Augusta National Golf Club addressed the media, as is custom. He used it to highlight the organization’s continued efforts to grow the game – everything from outreach programs and junior patron admission policies to a hot-selling video game.
“Golf is too precious, too wonderful, to sit on the sidelines and watch decreasing participation,” Payne said.
Soon, though, Payne was hit with the recurring hypocrisy of Augusta National, it’s longstanding tradition of extending invitations to men only.
“Mr. Chairman,” Payne was asked, “I note your concerns about the growth of golf around the world, and I also note that Augusta National is a very famous golf club. Don’t you think it would send a wonderful message to young girls around the world if they knew that one day they could join this very famous golf club?”
Payne wasn’t pleased.
“Once again, that deals with a membership issue,” he said tersely, “and I’m not going to answer it.”
Monday he finally did answer, and while Augusta National’s decision to admit two female members to its ranks is certainly historic, it does little to nothing for equality or even accessibility. All it does is end the great hypocrisy of an organization that can now move on without an endless chorus of criticism.
This really isn’t some monumental day in the women’s movement. It isn’t some big victory for the pressures brought by public sentiment or even the forces of political correctness.
Perhaps the issue, so trite at this point, simply wore down the “membership,” or at least Payne, to the point they just threw up their hands and said, “OK.” But as issues that will dramatically affect life in America, this one ranks about dead last.
Admitting former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina business executive Darla Moore doesn’t change the club dramatically. It will remain a playground of the rich, powerful and connected. There are just now two rich, powerful and connected women involved.