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Re: Moral Objections to Gambling Expansion - Too Late

Category: Gambling
Posted: 11/13/11 22:22

by Dave Mindeman

I realize that gambling as a source of state revenue has its controversies. But the basic argument used by one segment of the conservative base just doesn't hold any water ....as far as I can tell....

Even so, a large and politically powerful coalition of Minnesotans oppose gambling expansion for moral reasons, saying it comes with steep social costs, such as higher crime and gambling addiction. They say it's immoral to solve the state's financial ills on the backs of those who often can least afford it.

Sorry. But I think the moral argument has long since sailed in Minnesota. The social costs of gambling are certainly present in the state. We have a lot of pretty sad stories to tell. But, unless the moral argument moves to prohibition of gambling in all forms, blocking expansion based on that argument is weak.

People who have a gambling problem have outlets everywhere. If they are intent on hurting themselves with a gambling issue, there are places to go at any time. It is hard to imagine that stopping expansion is any kind of alleviation of the problem. It's not.

Yes, it would be immoral if we tried to solve the state's ills on the backs of those with gambling problems, if that were the main source of revenue. I certainly hope we would agree that gambling should only be a small addition to state resources. We can only hope that more normal revenue sources (like taxes) will be our main source.

We have other complications to deal with when it comes to state sponsored gambling -- legal and contract wise, but in the final analysis, any kind of moral objections should have been raised and dealt with long ago.
comments (1) permalink
11/23/11 10:17
RIGHT ON! I have nothing against the Indian
gaming rights, but lets spread this out to benefit
Minnesota. People who gamble have a choice to
gamble or not, If it's a problem don't go so much. For those against it, that is their choice, one doesn't have to go if you don't want to. I believe that it will bring alot of shared revenue to Minnesota and if its directed to the stadium or not, lets get some of the benefits to Minnesota.

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