As we approach the national day set aside to honor Doctor King, I am saddened and incredibly frustrated that the editor of Golf magazine is apparently not sure why he is receiving such an overwhelmingly negative reaction to the cover photo. The sign of a noose evokes fear, visions of lynchings at the hands of KKK members and other radical mobs, anger and a history of oppression carried out against mostly black males in this country.
The editorial board should consider terminating him and at the very minimum, he and the offending golf commentator should be requested to write an editorial on lynching and nooses. They should hold a series public forums explaining why the sport continues to be a sport for affluent people, and those not mostly of color. There are a set of twins who, as did Tiger Woods, defied the odds: Tony and Gipper Finau of Tongan/Samoan descent who grew up on the west side of Salt Lake City - a city with a 40% drop out rate for minorities. Both brothers graduated from West High in Salt Lake City, and are being recruited by a number of top universities. Last January the DC Congressman Faleomavaega announced that both Tony and his younger brother, Gipper Finau, will be participating in the qualifying round at the Makaha Golf Resort on January 8, 2007 in which the four top qualifiers will then be eligible to play for the upcoming Sony Open at the Waialae Country Club in Honolulu on January 10-14, 2007. The Sony Open is the second internationally renowned PGA tournament scheduled for the year 2007. Golf Magazine is owned by Time Inc. Wayne Powers is the President of the corporation - I met him last year and found him to be a good and honorable man. It is my hope that he will do everything in his power to mitigate this debacle.
He used the cover story to sell more magazines. Were I a subscriber to the magazine, I would immediately cancel my subscription forever. I hope that others who share my outrage will continue to flood his in box with emails questioning his unfortunately poor judgement. There is a standard among writers in the journalism business - I cannot imagine that he will or should not be sanctioned for such an aggregious error. I too am a published writer and write about timely, thought provoking and even what some might consider to be controversial topics. I hold myself to a higher standard and so should he, so should we all. Shame on him.
Update: They fired the incredibly ignorant/naive editor - A NYC native - the most diverse and greatest city in the world. There should be zero tolerance for bigotry in any form. Can we figure out how to get Bill Bennett off CNN next?