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Globe and Mail op-ed: Anachronistic, but not Augusta National

This morning’s Globe and Mail includes the op-ed that the paper asked me to write about the comparison between Toronto Ladies and the National and Augusta National. Here’s a taste:

When you enter the parking lot of the National Golf Club of Canada in Woodbridge, Ont., it feels like many private golf clubs. There are many fancy cars and you’re immediately met by a greeter who wants to know which member you’re playing with and when you’re teeing it up.

It isn’t until you hit the driving range that you notice that the National is different. There’s a lot of testosterone, and no women in sight. That’s because the National is a club for men only. Sure, they say that women can play, but I’ve never seen one on the fairways in the dozen or so times I’ve played the prestigious course.

Contrast that against the Ladies Golf Club of Toronto and its historic course on Yonge Street. It’s the only club in North America where women are the only full members. Unlike the National, it’s far more receptive to men. I played there last week, and was greeted by a male attendant at the bag drop. There was a male starter at the first tee. You’d never see a female starter at the National. At Ladies, men can join on a restricted basis, with limited tee times. The exclusion of men is seen as empowering, whereas the National’s policy is viewed as exclusionary.

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Jeff Lancaster

Jeff Lancaster is the Publisher of CanadianGolfer.com.

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