President Donald Trump has publicly feuded with NFL players over protesting during the national anthem and lashed out at NBA players who have criticsed him, NorthJersey.com reports.
But Tiger Woods, who has played golf twice with Trump since his 2016 election, is not getting involved.
Woods shot a 1-under 70 on Sunday at Ridgewood Country Club, finishing The Northern Trust at 4-under par, well out of contention.
After his round, Woods was asked to describe his professional and personal relationship with the president. Trump has always been close to golf, he owns several country clubs and has developed a relationship with the most famous player in the world. Woods, a 14-major winner, played golf with Trump as recently as last November.
“Well, I’ve known Donald for a number of years,” Woods said. “We’ve played golf together. We’ve had dinner together. I’ve known him pre-presidency and obviously during his presidency.”
Woods was then asked to explain why he has a friendly relationship with the president when athletes like James are publicly clashing with the president and many people, especially minorities and immigrants, feel threatened by his policies.
“Well, he’s the President of the United States,” Woods said. “You have to respect the office. No matter who is in the office, you may like, dislike the personality or the politics, but we all must respect the office.”
Last year, Trump vulgarly called out NFL players who protested during the national anthem, saying that they should lose their jobs and has publicly challenged the league to create a policy that forces players to stand during the anthem. He’s publicly feuded with LeBron James and refused to invite the Warriors to the White House after several players and coach Steve Kerr said they wouldn’t attend a White House visit.
When Woods was asked if he had anything else to say about the state of the discourse in our country surrounding race relations, he took a pass.
“No,” Woods said. “I just finished 72 holes and I’m really hungry.”
From there, the interview continued and focused on golf. The conversation about race and sports in our country will surely continue with the NFL season set to start in two weeks. But Woods obviously has no interest in getting involved in that debate.