South African gold legend Gary Player received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from US President Donald Trump on Thursday – but his son Marc Player isn’t happy about it.
In a series of tweets, Marc described his father’s decision to accept the medal as “tone deaf” and “wrong.”
“I really wish my father would have simply and politely declined this ‘award’ at this time, from this man. Tone deaf. In denial. Wrong!” he wrote in one of the tweets.
The award came just a day after Trump seemingly encouraged hundreds of his supporters to protest outside US Capitol on Wednesday against the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s election victory.
The protest culminated in a group of the protesters storming the Capitol building and delaying the certification for several hours.
The award ceremony was held at the White House and was not open to the press. Besides Gary, Trump also awarded the medal to other golfers Annika Sorenstam and Babe Zaharias (posthumously).
Marc, who is based in Florida, US, is also involved in the golf industry, specifically “course design, real estate, events, licensing and memorabilia,” according to his Twitter bio.
Trump and Gary Player
His father Gary, 85, is one of just five players to complete a career Grand Slam, which entails winning all four of golf’s major modern titles. He has won a total of nine majors and 24 PGA Tour titles.
Trump is a self-confessed fan of Gary Player and has regularly wished him a happy birthday on social media in the past. “Happy birthday to @garyplayer, a truly great champion and person!” he tweeted in 2017.
“Happy birthday to my friend Gary Player – one of the truly great golf champions of all time. He looks many years younger than his actual age,” Trump also wrote on Instagram in 2015.
Gary has not publicly reacted to criticism of his acceptance of Trump’s award. His reaction will be added as soon as it is available.