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February-25-03

Augusta: Obstacles Expected as Plans to Protest Continue

One week after Augusta Richmond county commissioners approved a new ordinance requiring protesters to obtain permits 20 days before demonstrating, Martha Burk, chair of the National Council of Women’s Organizations (NCWO) told the New York Times she expects to encounter obstacles when she applies this week for a permit to protest at the Masters tournament in April. Already, Richmond County Sheriff Ronnie Strength, who is tasked with approving permit applications, has deemed sidewalks near Augusta National off-limits due to safety concerns, according to the Times. However, Burk—who earlier this month surveyed potential protest sites—challenged, “To prohibit a demonstration anywhere on Washington Road, outside the entrance to the club, is unacceptable…Why are protesters a safety hazard any more than pedestrians are a safety hazard?” reported the Times.

Augusta National is the site of the Masters, an event sanctioned by the PGA Tour, though the PGA does not own or run the Masters. The NCWO argues that by sanctioning an event held at a club that practices such blatant discrimination, the PGA violates its own anti-discrimination policies. More over, there is "corporate hypocrisy that surrounds, feeds and creates this event,” said Burk to the Times.

The Feminist Majority is a member of NCWO, along with 152 other groups—making its total membership close to seven million.

READ Meeting up with Martha Burk at Ms. Magazine online

Media Resources: Associated Press 2/22/03; NY Times 2/25/03; Feminist Daily News Wire

   

     

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