In the aftermath of Dustin Johnson’s announcement that he was taking time away from the Tour to address “personal issues” and the statement from the PGA Tour that it has not suspended the world’s 17th-ranked player, an old argument has heated up again.
The PGA Tour has been firm since drug testing began in 2008 that it would make public news of a player failing a test for performance-enhancing drugs, known as PEDs, but it would not reveal failed tests for recreational drugs. No surprise, the media have consistently argued against the Tour’s stance, but players for the most part are supportive.
“The fact that other sports (announce suspensions for recreational drugs) doesn’t mean that we should,” Kevin Streelman said.
“I guess they’re protecting the image of the Tour. That’s all I can think of,” Luke Donald said.
Still, Donald is like other golf followers. He has heard the rumors and seen where this story has spiraled. He wonders whether being more straightforward about everything might not be the best solution.
“I would say in general, society values people coming out and expressing what they’ve done and trying to make up for. Especially in the U.S., I think that’s a trait of a lot of American citizens,” Donald said. “They’re a forgiving nation. They’d rather see that than cover something up and pretend it didn’t happen.”