South Korean golfer D.H. Lee needs to take some lessons in public relations. His actions at the AT&T National in Bethesda, Md warrant a sit down with PGA leadership to say the least. Lee flipped his middle "F" finger at the crowd after hitting a poor shot on the 12th hole.
Lee is a young man and needs to grow up. He needs to learn that a golfer should never act like a clown towards the gallery or act like a buffoon towards golf fans. Those fans are customers. You don't anger your customers. You never give the media or the fan base reasons to mock you or consider you a loser.
As I said, Lee is still young and hopefully this incident won't be a defining moment for him as far as being labeled a trouble maker or delinquent. Hopefully he will learn from this mistake. Hopefully there are people in his inner circle and the PGA that will work with the young man to teach him the correct way to act in the correct manner on and off the golf course.
I do think that the PGA needs to have sit down with Lee and if possible they need to punish him in some way and provide him with the tools necessary to be act in a positive manner on the course.
If Lee wants to act like a clown he should join the circus or go into a career where he can make a complete fool of himself. The golf course isn't the venue for immature and negative behavior.
Actions like Lee's can ruin a golfer. It can make him the subject of ridicule and scorn in the media. He needs to know that his actions were and will be caught on tape for the whole world to see. he needs to know that the media and sports fans are looking for a juicy story. It makes for good television.
I understand that all athletes get caught up in the moment of competition and do things when they are under intense pressure. It's even harder when people in the gallery are heckling or annoying the athlete.
Professional sports figures need to find positive ways of channeling their emotions if for nothing else than being able to continue to compete without falling apart. The successful golfer is able to maintain his/her composure and block-out all the nonsense around them.
While Lee's actions aren't the worst I've seen or heard of, especially this past week, they are still wrong. This is a moment that Lee can learn from and hopefully as I said before it won't define him or his career.