Phil Mickelson was the front of the line for the LIV Golf money grab. (Credit: L.E.MORMILE / Shutterstock.com)
It’s true, everyone really does have a price. Just look at the dozens of pro golfers jumping to the upstart LIV Tour, bankrolled but the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia.
The new tour has bought these players with dirty, blood-stained money, all in an attempt to “sportswash” centuries of human rights abuses while dancing hand-in-hand with terrorists. Remember, this is the government that still must regularly deny involvement with 9/11. This is the government that ordered the hit on dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi of the Washington Post. This is the government that continues to suppress the rights of women and torture its own citizens.
Many LIV players are has-beens and never-beens, but rumors have big names lined up to follow – including Cameron Smith, who spectacularly won the British Open this weekend.
Look, I’m all for guys being paid hundreds of millions to never sniff a leaderboard again—I’m looking at you, Mickelson – but I can’t believe so many so easily sold out to a murderous, rights-suppressing regime.
Nor can I believe the early defector’s claim, “We’re doing it to grow the game.” Are we really expecting a boom of Wednesday morning ladies’ 9-holer groups to take root in Riyadh?
C’mon guys, you’re better than this. Do you really want to spend the rest of your careers trying to justify your tacit endorsement of these thugs? Let’s call it what it is: A money grab. A dirty money grab.