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Natalie Gulbis and "political correctness"

Just a quick note on the comment for “Not politically correct, but respectful,” who responded to my post on Natalie Gulbis yesterday.

He writes: “As a middle-aged man, I am highly sensitive to the old boys golfer sterotype, one who treats woman as objects. I am sure that is not your intention and you would jump up and down that you are not sexist, but reinforcing the notion that all these male (I assume) golf writers are in London to see how hot is Natalie Gulbis, “

Hmmm….What stereotype am I reinforcing exactly? I don’t recall pushing her into swimsuit modeling….

He continues:

“You do a dis-service to your fellow man who appreciates a good looking woman but does not define woman by their looks (she is pretty fine package nonetheless), which is the impression you have left in this piece. Signed: Middle aged man who hates political correctness

I actually think Gulbis has defined herself by her looks — and thankfully she has some game to back it up. She’s not quite like a Russian tennis player we all know, who was only known for her looks — and interest in Detroit Red Wings.

Interesting to note that when it was announced (as a joke) that Gulbis was a suprise guest at the TaylorMade golf ball launch in Georgia last month, the men jumped out of their seats so quickly that you’d have thought a world-class stripper had just entered the room.

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Robert Thompson

A bestselling author and award-winning columnist, Robert Thompson has been writing about business and sports, and particularly golf, for almost two decades. His reporting and commentary on golf has appeared in Golf Magazine, the Globe and Mail, T&L Golf and many other media outlets. Currently Robert is a columnist with Global Golf Post, golf analyst for Global News and Shaw Communications, and Senior Writer to ScoreGolf. The Going for the Green blog was launched in 2004.

1 CommentLeave a comment

  • Robert:

    Lots of comments to your blog…By the way, I feel honoured to be the sole subject of an entire post!

    As you say, “I don’t recall pushing her into swimsuit modelling…” Don’t you get it…the approach you (and many of your fellow golf reporters) take to reporting reinforces “woman as objects”. To illustrate, let me quote another portion of your original post “Of course that wasn’t what the largely male media showed up for. No. We appeared to see if Natalie Gulbis is as hot in person as she is on the bad reality program on the golf channel.” The premise of the event in London was a golf tournament promotion but instead you attended to see how hot Natalie G. is in person. In other words, she is an object first…and golfer second. Yes, I know she has a calendar and she would appear to take advantage of her “television friendly” advantages. Nonetheless, I get the sense that you and your fellow golf writers are only interested in her looks and not the athlete…reinforcing the sterotype that middle age male men objectify good looking young athletes…I know it happens all the time, does not mean it should.

    As to whether Natalie has “defined herself by her looks”, perhaps you should ask her yourself, “would she rather be known as a hot pinup girl or a highly talented professional athlete?” I would suggest the latter…but the “middle aged male golfer” may disagree.

    As to your last comment “Interesting to note that when it was announced (as a joke) that Gulbis was a suprise guest at the TaylorMade golf ball launch in Georgia last month, the men jumped out of their seats so quickly that you’d have thought a world-class stripper had just entered the room.” – My point exactly. Reporters see her as an object first.

    Woman have been trying to change this culture for many years…but it is up to the men to do it from within.

    Anyone else have a position on this?

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