How Much Space Do Golf Courses Take Up in America?

I was watching some George Carlin clips on YouTube today when I came across one in which Carlin proposes an unusual idea: why don’t we claim — via eminent domain — all of the land used for golf courses in America and give it to the homeless?

In his act, Carlin says that American golf courses use up a total area larger than two Rhode Islands plus Delaware. That seemed too absurd to not investigate.

According to the Golf Course Superintendents of America, there are 2,244,512 acres of golf courses in the U.S. That’s the equivalent of 3,507 square miles.

And via the Wolfram Alpha search engine, I can tell you that two Rhode Islands (1,040 square miles each) and a Delaware (1,950 square miles) would add up to 4,030 square miles.

So Carlin was a bit off. But not by much.

That being said, I don’t think we need to reclaim the land used for golf; we just need to get back the time wasted while playing it. That’s the key to making America a more productive nation.

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