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THE CASINO BOOM: BAD LUCK FOR THE POOR

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A dealer picks up chips on a mock black jack casino table during a photo opportunity at an international tourism promotion symposium in Tokyo

Government can’t succeed in eliminating poverty but it can certainly contribute to poverty’s perpetuation. Authorizing commercial casinos throughout the country disproportionately damages poor people through the encouragement of bad habits. Barbara Dafoe Whitehead of the Institute for American Values notes that in the Northeast alone, 23 new commercial casinos have opened since 2004, with 12 more under-development. These establishments make most of their money on slot machines which Dafoe Whitehead describes as “sophisticated computerized devices engineered to produce continuous and repeat betting.” Numerous studies show the poor as chief victims of gambling addiction with its distortion of core American values- exalting success as a product of luck, rather than hard work and self-discipline. To pay for expensive social programs to help the poor, officials actually hurt the poor by taking their money to get tax revenue from gambling.

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Comments (4)

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  1. JGUY  •  Jun 29, 2014 at 11:45 pm

    Michael…..it’s called “freedom”…..don’t play if you don’t want to……..

    We have many stupid laws that regulate that which people should
    be responsible for …..all by themselves….this is one..

  2. Jim  •  Jul 2, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    How else can anyone make enough money to afford Obamacare?

  3. Audey  •  Jul 7, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    Jguy, there are many activities that we don’t allow because of the harm they cause to the overall society; we don’t allow minors to buy alcohol, we regulate tobacco, we ban, to the extent we can, prostitution (which harms women, even those who “chose” the oldest profession end up raped, beaten and degraded), and other activities. Further, even if it’s legal, there is something wrong with the government promoting a vice. Gambling drains peoples’ savings and ruins lives–government should not be promoting this. By your reasoning, the government ought to be selling heroin and reaping a nice tax profit, why not? don’t use if you don’t want to….right?

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