WASHINGTON (TND) — A professional golfer who is paid to be a player in the controversial LIV Golf League recently responded to an interview asking what he would say to families of victims who died in the September 11, 2001 (9/11) terrorist attacks by saying that people need to "look toward the pathway to peace and forgiveness."
LIV Golf's Bryson DeChambeau spoke with CNN's Kaitlan Collins on Thursday following the merger announcement of the Professional Golfers' Association Tour (PGA Tour), DP World Tour, and the Public Investment Fund (PIF) on Tuesday.
The PGA Tour and LIV Golf have been at odds after the latter began attracting professional golfers to sign with them by offering large sums of money. The Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund provides funding for the LIV Golf Tour and DeChambeau was paid more than $125 million to join according to Axios.
When speaking with CNN, DeChambeau said he "felt bad" for professional golfers who didn't sign up with LIV Golf before the merger. The merger drew fierce criticism from a group that represents families of the victims of 9/11 who claim they had been "betrayed" by the PGA over its "quest for money" by merging with the Saudi Arabian golf league.
Our entire 9/11 community has been betrayed by Commissioner Monahan and the PGA as it appears their concern for our loved ones was merely window-dressing in their quest for money – it was never to honor the great game of golf," said 9/11 Families United chair Terry Strada in a statement.
DeChambeau was asked during his interview with CNN what he would say to families of 9/11 victims regarding the merger.
I think we’ll never be able to repay the families back for what exactly happened just over 20 years ago and what happened is definitely horrible," DeChambeau answered. "I think as time has gone on, 20 years has passed, we’re in a place now where it’s time to start trying to work together to make things better together as a whole."
DeChambeau then admits that he doesn't "know exactly what they’re feeling" and that he "can’t ever know what they feel" but added he has a "huge amount of respect for their position and what they believe" and doesn't ever want "anything like that to ever occur again."
The LIV Golf player then advocated that as people "move forward" from the 9/11 attacks, they should "look toward the pathway to peace and forgiveness."
I think as we move forward from that, we have to look toward the pathway to peace and forgiveness, especially if we’re trying to mend the world and make it a better place," DeChambeau added. "I think this is what they’re trying to accomplish, LIV is trying to accomplish, PIF is trying to accomplish. We’re all trying to accomplish is a better world for everybody with entertainment for everybody around the world."
DeChambeau then floats that he is "a golfer" and so he "can’t necessarily speak on" the at-one-time hot political topic that is the killing of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi when CNN asks about it, but then he insists that Saudia Arabia is "trying to work on" being "better allies" with the United States.
I’m not going to get into politics, I’m not specialized in that. What I can say is they’re trying to do good for the world and showcase themselves in a light that hasn’t been seen in a while," DeChambeau told CNN.
Nobody’s perfect, but we’re all trying to improve in life," the LIV golfer added.
According to the 9/11 Memorial and Museum, 2,977 people from 93 nations were killed by the attacks.
2,753 people were killed in New York; 184 people were killed at the Pentagon; and 40 people were killed on Flight 93," the 9/11 Memorial and Museum says.
Islamist extremists were responsible for the 9/11 attacks. Fifteen of the 19 terrorists responsible for 9/11 hailed from Saudi Arabia.