Opinion Paper – Should Casino Gambling be Prohibited
This is an opinion paper on Part 2 Issue 7 of the textbook Taking Sides, Clashing Views on Controversial Issues in Business Ethics and Society (6th ed.) by Lisa H. Newton and Maureen M. Ford. In this paper I will discuss my reaction to the issue “Should Casino Gambling be Prohibited”. The text discussed both sides of this issue. William A. Galston and David Wasserman took the “Yes” position in their paper Gambling Away Our Moral Capital. William R. Eadington took the “No” position in his paper The Proliferation of Commercial Gambling in America. I will give my opinion on the topic as I think some important points were missed by the authors.
While reading the articles I noticed a couple issues that were not addressed that I thought should be. First off, no one mentioned internet gambling. Second, no one mentioned whether or not the government had the right to prohibit gambling.
According to (http://gsulaw.gsu.edu/lawand/papers/su01/feldman/), the first online casino opened in 1995. Since then the industry has grown by leaps and bounds. For this reason, gambling is just a credit card or a PayPal account away. I wondered why neither author mentioned internet gambling revenues in their figures. I’m certain they are substantial. This also pushed the morality of gambling into the realms of other issues. Regulating the internet is a nightmare at best and considered by some an infringement on freedom of speech.
My personal political and moral leanings lean toward lack of government intervention in the personal lives of it’s citizens. For this reason I do not believe gambling should be prohibited. The issue of government sponsored gambling such as lotteries is another story. I can see both sides of this issues, however. The poor pay little to no taxes. They do, however, buy a disproportionate amount of lottery tickets. Some may say this is exploitation of the poor, but I tend to disagree. Unless someone is a compulsive gambler, they do not spend their rent money on the lottery. They spend what they consider to be their entertainment income. If the lottery was not taking the money, where would it be spent? What about the compulsive gamblers? They’ll find another outlet. I know a woman who had to go to Gamblers Anonymous due to her bingo habit. And failing that, there are always the riverboat and the internet.
While many people have moral objections to gambling I don’t think it’s a force that can be stopped. Even if someone convinced me that it was a rot on our society I would not want to see the government regulate it. Gambling should be left as a personal choice.