It appears that USA Today believes, merely belonging to a golf club owned by President Donald Trump’s corporation means that you deserve having your name and personal information made public.
In its investigation, USA Today looked into the backgrounds of people who belong to the Trump golf clubs in states such as Florida, New Jersey and Virginia, and found that a list of lobbyists, CEO’s, government contractors, and others who make money from connections with the government, are members:
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) September 6, 2017
“Members of the clubs Trump has visited most often as president — in Florida, New Jersey and Virginia — include at least 50 executives whose companies hold federal contracts and 21 lobbyists and trade group officials. Two-thirds played on one of the 58 days the president was there, according to scores they posted online,” the paper exclaimed in its September 6 story.
From this list of names, USA Today concluded that, “Trump gets millions from golf members. CEO’s and lobbyists get access to president.”
Speaking of their investigation, USA Today stated, “The review shows that, for the first time in U.S. history, wealthy people with interests before the government have a chance for close and confidential access to the president as a result of payments that enrich him personally. It is a view of the president available to few other Americans.”
One fact that seems to be left unmentioned in the USA Today story is that these high powered golf club members have been members for years and did not suddenly join merely because Donald Trump won the White House.
Far down in its story, though, the paper did note, “Lobbyists face no legal restrictions on golf memberships.”
In other words, despite thousands of words coloring the club memberships as somehow illicit, no laws were broken.
The story amazed many in the media. USA Today Washington Bureau Chief Susan Page noted the story on her Twitter account:
USA TODAY ID'ed 4,500 Trump golf-club members through social media & a website golfers use to track handicaps, then researched who they were https://t.co/5ExoctJrnS
— Susan Page (@SusanPage) September 6, 2017
But many others reacted negatively to the story saying that USA Today may have put the outed members and their families have been placed in danger of Antifa and Black Lives Matter-styled terrorism.
Many commented on the paper’s tweets on the story:
— GayPatriot got JACK'd – DANEgerus ن (@DANEgerus) September 6, 2017
I missed the part where there was any wrongdoing found or alleged. This feels like journalists doxxing innocent people. https://t.co/K6s5BL0zwr
— David Martosko (@dmartosko) September 6, 2017
This ID enterprise has a very creepy, overlordish feel to it. Does "outing" of private law abiding individuals not bother you?
— Norvell Rose (@NorvR) September 6, 2017
And you're proud of doxxing citizens who golf? You should be ashamed.
— SB (@ShannonCLK) September 6, 2017
How would you like to be investigated and doxxed for working for @USATODAY or for your membership in social groups? You people are deranged!
— Johnny Philistine (@TejasGator) September 6, 2017
You also understand that these clubs existed way before his presidency, right? https://t.co/Ey6ql41NaW
— 🍁Thankful Ginger 🍂 (@mchastain81) September 6, 2017
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.