Originally Posted by Stretch
Have MLB pitchers been allowed to balk for 75 years, but now the rule is about to be arbitrarily amended? Poor analogy anyway. More like baseball outlawing submarine pitching. It's never really been a big factor one way or another, but the commish just thinks it looks weird.
You're projecting here. I think most people realize it's not being potentially banned because it looks weird. The argument will be something about whether anchoring is a proper golf stroke or not, and the legal matter will likely be whether or not the USGA or the Tour has the ability to make such a judgement call.
I can't think of any great analogies to use as precedent. But the reality is that some major sports change their rules every year to improve the game in some way or another (either to make it more watchable, marketable or equitable). This type of ruling would be more akin to a sport changing or instituting a rule that is meant to address a newly exploited trend in the sport.
I remember when I played college football there was a "halo rule" for punt returners (of which I was one). The halo rule stated that at no time before the punt returner caught the ball could a defending team come within two yards of him. For me, this made the "fair catch" useless. I would catch the ball anywhere on the field knowing that I would always have enough time to avoid an oncoming tackler because he would have to slow down so as to not be in violation. Eventually they did away with this rule as more and more punt returners took advantage of it. It's that sort of exploitative trend that typically necessitates rule changes in sports.
On a different note, if the tour or the USGA cannot prove that anchoring provides an unfair advantage, it probably makes it equally difficult for a claimant to prove that they are at an unfair disadvantage by not being allowed to anchor. If a claimant attempts to use physical disability as a reconciling argument, it will probably not share the same success that the Casey Martin case had, as I'm pretty certain the issue in that case boiled down to whether or not walking the course was integral to the sport or not. In this case, no reasonable person can claim that putting is NOT integral to the sport. Therefore, I'm of the opinion that physical disabilities will NOT be taken into consideration in a hypothetical case like this.