For a man who has already spent 29 out of the 153 days of his presidency on the golf course, Trump should be expected to have decent etiquette on the links. A video has emerged of the President committing perhaps the most egregious offense on a golf course: driving his golf cart across the green.
Per Newsweek, “Greens are the most delicate parts of a golf course, and their surfaces must be treated with care so that the roll of putts is true. This is why when an approach shot strikes the green, the player must repair the indentation made by the ball. This is why a player should never step in another player’s putting line, as the weight could create an impression that disturbs the roll of the putt. To carelessly careen a heavy golf cart containing a heavy person across the green is laughably disrespectful, to the course and to everyone who will play the hole afterward.”
The person who shot the video, Twitter user @MikeNFrank, can be heard saying, “It’s the only place you can drive on the green, right? On your own golf course.” The video was shot on Trump’s property in Bedminster, New Jersey, at the Trump National Golf Club.
Golf is a game of unwritten rules. When a player takes a divot out of the fairway, that divot should be replaced. When one is about to take a shot, other players should be silent. And when players needs to get from one side of the green to the other, they certainly shouldn’t drive their freaking golf carts across the freaking putting surface.
You won’t find this last guideline in many books of golf etiquette, though, because careening across the green in a cart would have been unthinkable to most if the president of the United States hadn’t done it during a weekend round of golf.
Of course, this is far from Trump’s only offense on the links.
An extensive investigation by The Washington Post found that Trump has a sordid history of cheating. According to Mark Mulvoy, the former managing editor of Sports Illustrated, the President has said, “Ahh, the guys I play with cheat all the time. I have to cheat just to keep up with them.” Rick Reilly, the sportswriter who accompanied Trump on the green for his 2004 book “Who’s Your Caddy?” said, “When it comes to cheating, he’s an 11 on a scale of one to 10.” Trump, of course, responded by calling Reilly a “terrible writer.” Reilly is an 11-time Sportswriter of the Year.
It seems that Trump’s abhorrent contempt for guidelines isn’t limited to his governing. The fact that he would so egregiously breach protocol for an institution that he actually cares for offers little hope, then, for our democracy, which inherently relies on the President’s respect for government conventions. And so far, in his short time in office, he has treated the Presidency the same way that he treated his own green.
Brian Tyler Cohen is a political writer, actor, and comedy sketch director. He graduated from Lehigh University with a dual degree in English and Business. He currently lives in Los Angeles.