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Ontario Golfers: Obese, Game Should Be Banned, says NDP MPP

The debate over pesticide use in the province of Ontario is heating up, with the NDP, hardly an opposition in this province, but a political group that loves to gain notice by yelling loudly, attacking golf courses, and, apparently golfers. Under the current proposed law, golf courses are receiving a partial exemption.

Rosario Marchese, the NDP MPP for Trinity Spadina, and the guy with the goofy beret, has decided that not only do golf courses put chemicals on “by the tonne,” but golfers are, well, fat.

This guy must assume there are no golfers in his riding:

First, Marchese’s comments on golf courses:

But golf courses, which drink chemicals to the gills, where we pour an incredible amount of chemicals, by the tonne, to keep that grass so pristine-we’re exempting golf courses. Why would you do that? Golf courses use pesticides on a massive scale. Compare that to residential use and there is no comparison. Those chemicals by the tonne are acceptable to you Liberals so that you can see pristine green grass on a golf course? How could you do that? How could you accept that argument as being logical? Why? Just to play golf?

But here couldn’t end right there. Apparently he’s been hanging around the putting green and doesn’t like what he sees:

Last week, I said to those of you who play golf that I’m worried about obesity, because I see a lot of golf players who are, dare I say as best as I can, obese

Okay, so let me get this straight — golf courses, according to this joker, are simply an environmental horror show — though there’s a lot of proof that courses have cut back significantly on pesticide use. I’ll agree courses are typically still too green, but I think in time that will change anyway. However, to say all golfers are fat is simply ignorant grandstanding. I’m not sure how blanket pronouncements of this type are at all useful. But these loud mouth didn’t stop there. He’d ban golf if he had his way. What is this? 16th century Scotland?

Mr. Rosario Marchese: The famous ones are not obese, of course, because they keep nice and trim, but those who go and just have fun on the golf course, I’ve got to tell you, are obese. I’m concerned about obesity. Minister of Health, you too are concerned about this.
Hon. George Smitherman: Careful; I’m sensitive.
Mr. Rosario Marchese: As a Minister of Health, I said. I made no reference to anyone or anything. But I’ve got to tell you, when those guys are playing golf, as far as I know-I don’t see many people walking. Maybe it’s a good thing; I don’t know. But not too many walk on a golf course. They use those little carts, and the only exercise they get is to swing the golf bat.

Bat? What world does this guy live in?

Mr. Mike Colle: Club, club, club.
Mr. Rosario Marchese: See, they call them clubs. ” Club” is such an awful word. So they get these golf clubs-that’s the only exercise they get. The only other exercise they get is bending down to pick up the ball. That’s the exercise they get out of golf. That’s why I said that I prefer to chase a big ball-a soccer ball-rather than a golf ball, which isn’t being chased but rather carted about. You get to it by a cart and you just bend over. That’s the extent of your exercise, you understand. When you go for a beer, it’s 200 calories in one beer. You go for two beers, it’s 400 calories. All you do is pick up the ball and swing the club. That’s it. It’s not much of a game, I’ve got to tell you.

Ah, now that’s where he’s coming from… he continues the discussion to its natural progression.

So I’m concerned for two reasons: one, the fact that golf players are a bit overweight, and in some cases obese; and on the other hand, I’m worried about the fact that when they bend over to pick up the ball, that ball has gone through that grass for thousands of miles back and forth, and it picks up a lot of chemicals as it rolls through the grass. So they pick up the ball, they put it down, and then so many of them smoke or touch their lips. Obviously, they’re ingesting a whole lot of chemicals into their system.
Why not ban pesticide use in golf? Why not-
Interjection: Ban golf.
Mr. Rosario Marchese: Banning golf is another matter. I would ban it myself. But that’s just for fun.

So there you have it, Ontario golfers: An Ontario politician actually suggesting we ban golf. At least we understand the agenda of one nutty elected official.

Anyway, there were some politicians that defended the game. You can read their remarks here.

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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.

6 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I wish I could say this was a joke. Embarassed by the diction, logic (or lack thereof), and ignorance of this elected official. I know I should not be surprised but…

  • If it’s any consolation, I thought Britain had a monopoly on clueless politicians. Thanks for reminding me that they are mere amateurs alongside Mr Marchese (although he does get some Brownie points back for at least unequivocally speaking his mind…)

  • I am completley amazed when such a stupid person is an elected official. Surely, I will be amazed many more times.

  • UN-Freakin-Believeable. This guy has some serious issues. I say we ban berets. Clearly a non golfer. That being said, I chalk this up to the ramblings of a lunatic, which is why the NDP is so scary popular in this country. Find another soapbox, buddy….. nobody’s listening here. Idiot.

  • Just checked out Mar-Cheesie’s website. It gets worse.

    Turns out that he has a Bachelor of Education.

    Please save our children.

  • RT

    Perhaps the “adovcate for education” should go to driving range and get some. I think you should invite him for an interview and have him hit a large pail of balls, bend over and swing at least 100 times in half an hour. He probably won’t be able to move for the couple of days following. Be sure to ask him if this can be considered excersise, and please pick a day when the temperature is above 26 with the humidex approaching 32.

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