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Do we have a reason to be ashamed of who we are? Should we try to present ourselves as something we are not?

These questions are central to issues like the Collared Shirt Rule for major tournaments or the way that the new disc magazine (FDM) portrays the sport. It seems to me that we cannot disguise who we are and trying to do so will not work. Beyond that, why should we try?

Go to a disc golf course and watch who shows up. Most of those you see will be young, blue collar and counter-culture (let's call that Y, BC, CC). If a park or a potential sponsor or a player cannot embrace (or at least tolerate) Y, BC,CC then they will not like the sport of disc golf. Go to a disc golf tournament and watch who shows up. Mostly the same group. Somewhat older and more dedicated but still BC and CC.

We are not like ball golfers. We are not as wealthy or as conservative as they are. Nor will we be for the foreseeable future. We would look foolish trying to pass ourselves off as something we are not. And our foolish attempt would be immediately transparent to all involved. Hippies in collared shirts are still hippies. So too are Y, BC, CC in collared shirts.

If Flying Disc Magazine were to homogenize itself to the point where it hides the true character of our sport, it does us no favors with parks or sponsors. Sorry but that scam is going nowhere.

So why should we be ashamed of what we are? Some of us find the Frisbee Family to be pretty darn charming and lovable. Since joining the Frisbee Family is purely voluntary, anyone whose ego needs a status bump will go down the road to the country club.

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Whether you get your drugs,
From a Bar,
Liquor store,
Drug Cartel,
Hood,
Pharmacy,
Suburbia,
Executive Suite,
It does not matter.

The criminals exist at one end of it.
How many shootings have been over drugs in the past few years?
1 is too many.
People, if they do not know you feel this fear and don't want it around.
It is that simple.
It takes a few angry people over tax dollars to make change.
There has been a "local" disc golf course almost stopped because of excessiveness.
Be careful.
I think Mark started this post to see where we would take it. I think I just heard him chuckle.

There are plenty of sports that are legitimate but do not get much coverage and money. This sport is already legitimate but we have players saying that it is not, because of the "stoner" aspect. Players are de-legitimatizing the very sport they want legitimatized with their very own negative comments! One person's definition of what is better for this sport may vary from another and I think that some people have personal crusades against certain activities and use Disc Golf as a means to further their agenda without looking at the big picture. The "stoner" aspect will always be a part of the sport no matter what people try to do or say. I think Mark is proposing or suggesting that Disc Golf may want to re-think the targets and strategies of future promotions/marketing to better use our strengths instead of our weaknesses. That is the crux of the biscuit in my mind.
hey now,have to agree with nitegolfer.Beating a dead horse into the ground is still,beating a dead horse.Get over the STONER aspect,walk away and play the next basket or two.Perhaps playing the game is more benificial than being on line to argue about attitudes you can not change at this given time.Go out and play,enjoy.Peace
I am currently working with a county board to install a disc golf course. The head of the board is a judge. Another member is a juvenile probation officer. Their idea is to build a recreational facility that will give juveniles a possitive outlet. Recreation.
Image is everything! It has taken longer than it should have, but this sport is so great, it will succeed inspite of ourselves.
Please make it easier for us to get these courses installed.
Russell said, "Now I have nothing else to add on this subject."

Finally, something worth reading from him. :)
Please reread Craig Getty's post. You can think about this in any way that you want to but you can't deny reality. As long as we are working with local government, charities, private land owners, and through a donation process, drug use is not an image we should embrace. No, we shouldn't try and kick those guys out or discriminate against them. But neither should we accept the mantle of the druggie sport.

I know, especially in America, that we hate the notion of pretending to be something we're not; it's like Clinton's don't ask don't tell policy. But the reality is that we can't and should not accept open drug use and commentary.
Ahh, i see the light.... I'm the one doing the wrong thing by speaking up against what I consider "unacceptable behaviour" being demonstrated by other disc golfers whilst playing the game on public property that already has, and continues to damage the reputation of our fine game.

I'm so glad I'm now able to see that. And here I was, thinking that maybe if we took a "zero tolerance" approach to illicit drugs, especially during tournaments or where families and children might want to leanr and enjoy OUR game, we might progress the sport to something a little more professional and popular.

Name one other sport where illicit drug use is perceived to be an accepted part of the culture or image of the sport. Can't do it? Didn't think you could.

The stoner aspect probably came from the game's hippy roots, but does it have to continue being a major part of the game's image? No, only if we allow or want it to. Why not focus on the camaraderie of disc golfers, or the physical benefits of getting off the couch to go walk around a park throwing plastic? Or how about the beauty of a disc gliding 100-150m, and landing right under the basket, or even the sound of chains from your first ace or 50 foot plus putt? Instead, we seem to allow certain elements of the disc golf community to do what they please, and they use the excuse of the game's counter-culture beginnings to justify their anti-social behaviour. Shouldn't the game evolve beyond what it started out as, or is this too much to ask? I know everyone hates to compare us to ball golf, but humour me: how long would a member of a ball golf course last if he were to light up a joint and smoke it during a round? He/she would probably lose their membership before they putted out on the 18th! They may be wealthier and more conservative than us as a whole, but they've recognised that to become a professional sport they need to be more stringent in terms of what is and is not permitted whilst playing.

I would hate to see disc golf become as boring and elitist as ball golf is perceived to be (my opinion, sorry ball golf fans!), but we could learn a few things from them if we wanted to. There is no positive "spin" that can be put on marijuana use that would help to promote our game, which is why we need to ensure that we minimise or eliminate the damage it is doing (in my view, discussing the negative impact of the link between marijuana use and disc golf is not working against the sport, its highlighting an issue that I believe we as a community need to address. Walking away from the problem or ignoring it won't help to rectify the situation).

Nitegolfer, I have no personal crusade against smoking pot, and I would never use a game I love to further my own agenda like you suggest. But i agree with you in that we need to look closely at how we're perceived by the general community, and we need to continue to improve and promote our strengths and work to iron out our weaknesses, of which I think anti-social behaviour of any sort is one.

Some of you will be happy to hear this will be my last post on this thread. And for the record, I think Mark probably stirred this hornets nest deliberately as well (mind you, I enjoyed the debate). Nice one Mr. Ellis!
Ok, I'm in...

This is my last post on this thread too, so to finish it off, here is some light hearted comments, so don't be offended because I am just having some fun... This is a great topic and I have enjoyed the reading.

To Disc player sports: Good thoughts, I agree, moderation and descretion is a great maodel for life...

To Nightgolfer: Whaaat everrrr....... have a biscut

To Craig: Nice points from the real world issues to getting a course installed. The kids are our future, and we don't need to be tempting teenage kids who have just made it out a 12 step program, that law enforcement is trying to provide a safe inexpensive sport to play....

To Denny: Touche'

To Russell: Keep reading, maybe you will get it.

To Lyle: Another thoughtful post, and not much text, nice....

To Hootie: Great post, I agree whole heartedly, and yes ball golf is too stuffy, but we can learn from their success....

Bye now...... See you on the "HIPPY stoner sport/or yuppy collared shirt sport?" thread....
hey now,yes it's been enjoyable reading this thread,however one should reread what Mark posted.There's no need to beat yourself up.See you all on the course.Peace
well, i guess all the important people with the important ideas have decided this isn't important anymore, so... how respectful, great example set forth by our niche sport's saviors. wake up... i am making bets with my coworkers that the people who just peaced out of this discussion won't be able to stay away. ask them, though... most of what they are gonna have to say later will be too important to keep from typing out and adding. aha, nerds... i gotcha. each one teach one and all that, right? i mean, right?

raise your hand if you ever played football high on the weed??!?
american football, hootie!!
Ah, but that's the most fun thing about this thread and other ones too, isn't it? I mean you just won your bet. I'm baack.....

And besides, who said we can't change our mind. I think most of the people who said they were dropping this one were sick of reading all the reasons why we should promote our organization as a Y,BC,CC, toke em if got em, anything goes sort of crowd.

The real guys behind all of the biggest badest courses and disc golf clubs with all the real jobs, real money and real connections will probably tell you they don't agree, (though some may partake) and that being too open with the public and local businesses, governments etc, will lose us sponsors and grants, and in turn courses and new players....

But hey who knows. Maybe its time for all those potential sponsors, businesses, new players, families with kids, women (you name it), to embrace the future.

The future? yeah the future, you know where we let it all hang out, because portraying our image as professional and family friendly hides the true character of our sport, it does us no favors with parks or sponsors and that that scam is going nowhere............

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