The Augusta National Golf Club announced today that it will change the name of the long-standing ‘Masters Tournament’.
The historic club reported that following a thorough review of terminology, the name would be dropped. The Masters Tournament held in Augusta each year is currently delayed due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
The Augusta National Golf Club was opened in 1932 and hosted the first Masters Tournament in 1934. The club has its own racist past to contend with and it is hoped this move will allow them to survive the current political unrest. African Americans were not admitted as club members until 1990 and it was required that all caddies be Black.
The club has reported that they will take their renaming cue from the former Redskins Football Team, now Washington Football Team, and rename the tournament “Golf Tournament”.
Augusta National Golf Club in a circulated press statement wrote, “There was some concern among our membership that the term ‘masters’ might be perceived as a reference to slaveholders and slavery in the United States.” The club also said, “we would like to ensure that all people of color and those of African descent are comfortable on the grounds and not constantly reminded of their ancestry.” The release also included an apology on behalf of the club to all peoples of color, women, and all other protected classes under the law.
Augusta National Golf Club will update the title of the game before the start of the rescheduled November tournament. The club will incur significant expense to adjust and change everything from their website, to printed materials, to their Wikipedia page.
Leadership at Augusta reported that other changes were currently under consideration. “The white golf balls we have used for nearly a century are of contention among some members. We are evaluating the efficacy of choosing another ball color without offending any other heritages.” They reported that red, yellow, black, white, and brown are currently off the table of consideration. “We suspect neon-green will be the least divisive color going forward.” The Society of Green Tree Frogs of the Rainforest have reached out to Augusta and levied their concerns about the use of neon green. They are awaiting response from representatives of the club who did not immediately reply.
In cooperation with the PGA, Augusta is also carefully evaluating and researching the terms Banana-Ball, Frenchie, Handicap, Halfway House, Scotch Foursomes, Shrimp, Skin, Snowman, and Turkey.