Gambling 2 Essay, Research Paper
It is becoming a familiar scenario. A city or town in need of money
and jobs finds itself confronting an idea that promises to bring plenty of
both. This idea is bringing in legalized gambling to the community. All of
a sudden it s like bang, legalized gambling is the biggest economic
development force in almost every state in the country, says Robert
Goodman, an urban planner fom the University of Massachusetts who
recently completed a two-year national study of the gambling industry.
This is one of the reasons why legalized gamgling doesn t hurt the U.S.
economy; instead it improves the U.S. economy, because legalized
gambling gives entertainment to citizens, brings new job oppurtunities,
and lowers taxes; that is why the U.S. should legalize all gambling in all
Gambling has been practiced by people throughout history.
Anthropologists, who have found evidence of games of chance among early
peoples, contend that the attitude of early humankind toward gambling
derived from their general attitude toward the environment. To these
people the world was a mysterious place controlled by supernatural beings
whose favor or disfavor was manifested through chance situations and the
outcome of such events as hunts, wars, and games of chance; instruments
of divination frequently included objects used in gambling.
As people gradually acquired knowledge of the nature of their
environment and interpreted it in terms of cause and effect, their attitude
toward gambling changed. Games of chance became pastimes, but the
ancient belief that a lucky gambler was favored by the gods persisted.
Among the upper classes of the peoples of antiquity, gambling was
frequently associated with extravagance and licentiousness. During the
Middle Ages, in times of trouble, rabbis in European Jewish communities
banned dice games and other games of chance. Gambling was also
proscribed by some Eastern religions, such as Confucianism, by the Koran
of Islam, and by the moral codes of many Protestant denominations.
Today gambling occurs in practically all nations and takes a great
variety of forms. Among the most widespread practices are betting on the
outcome of horse and dog races; of bull, cock, and prize fights; of
wrestling matches; and of such games as baseball, football, basketball,
and hockey. Attempts on the part of professional gamblers to fix the
outcome of such games have caused numerous scandals and provoked
many representatives of organized sports to oppose professionally
arranged betting on such events. Other common forms of gambling include
roulette, card and dice games, and bingo. Games of this type, as well as
slot machines, constitute a major industry in Nevada especially in the
cities of Las Vegas and Reno where gambling was legalized in 1931, and
in Atlantic City, New Jersey, which legalized casino gambling in 1978. In
the early 1990s such gambling, with certain limitations, was legalized in
South Dakota and several other states and on some Native American
reservations. In 1991 gambling on Mississippi riverboats was revived in
Iowa. The most famous European gambling resort, the casino of Monte
Carlo, provides the principality of Monaco with much of its revenue. The
lottery, a form of gambling that dates from ancient times, is used as a
money-raising technique by religious groups, charities, and governments,
including most states in the United States and most Canadian provinces.
Gross revenue from state and local lotteries in the United States in 1990
exceeded $20 billion.
Although many Native Americans regard their reservation lands as a
key to the survival of Native American culture, most reservations are still
underdeveloped, and their inhabitants among the poorest of the nation’s
poor. During the 1980s, the Reagan administration encouraged the
reservations to adopt a policy of self-help and private enterprise, including
promotion of legal gambling as a revenue earner.
Gamling is the wagering of money or other item of value on an
uncertain event that is dependent either wholly on chance, as in roulette,
or partly on chance and partly on skill, as in certain card games and in