I'm not sure if this is a failure of USGA branding or just lame ignorance, but it's disappointing to see UltraViolet planning to protest at this Saturday's LPGA Tour stop in Phoenix.
Golf.com's Marika Washchyshyn reports on protest plans including a banner-carrying plane urging the LPGA Tour to "dump sexist Trump."
Unfortunately, the U.S. Women's Open at Trump Bedminster is hosted and operated by the USGA.
UltraViolet members will also be stationed at the gates to the grounds handing out golf balls and golf ball-patterned beach balls with the message, "LPGA: Dump Trump."
"The LPGA should not be rewarding Trump's bigoted brand and normalize his platform and policies that degrade women and divide our country," Shaunna Thomas, a co-founder of UltraViolet, said in a press release. "The USGA and LPGA need to send a clear signal to young golfers, including women, people of color, and people with disabilities that it stands against Trump's brand of hate, and for an inclusive strong future by moving the upcoming U.S. Women's Open from Trump National Golf Course."
This is a shame on many levels, with the most obvious being that protestors are targeting an event and players that did not select the venue. Nor does their showing up at the most significant championship in women's golf signal anything other than a desire to win a national championship.
**Randall Mell on the LPGA issuing a response. Tactful, with just enough light handoff to the actual hosts.
“The LPGA respects the freedom for individuals and organizations to express their own views. As the world's leading professional golf organization for women, the LPGA is committed to our mission, to create opportunities for the best female golfers in the world to showcase their talent. As a global tour and membership, we try not to let politics get in the way of their opportunities.
“Regarding the U.S. Women's Open, the USGA – not the LPGA -- owns and operates the event and we are delighted to have so many of our LPGA members qualify to participate each year. When it comes to decisions regarding venue, purse, TV, etc., those are solely made by the USGA. We respect and support the decisions made by the USGA on this matter.”