PROS AND CONS ABOUT LEGALIZING GAMBLING IN NEW YORK
the contemporary society, gambling has become an accepted reality in New York
and also in the majority of the states in America. Gambling may be traced from
as early as during the Roman Empire during the rule of Caesar, who had so many
engaging in it around the kingdom. Korn and Shaffer define gambling as the act
of risking something that holds value to an individual for an outcome or event
whereby the possibility of winning is lower and is not certain at all (223).
Gambling is all over the state and the country with individuals playing the
lottery, betting on football teams, betting on horse racing on the track and
even the usual dubbing of an individualism bingo on the community hall. It may
also take several forms that could range from the traditional forms, poker
tournaments, online casinos and even betting on the ponies as well (Johansen,
67-80). It is an issue that had resulted to heated debating among the lawmakers
and also the general public on whether gambling should be legalized and hence
allowing the adults to engage in the sources of entertainment freely. There are
also several definitions that individuals, institutions, and even leaders
ascribe to gambling mostly depending on their personal experience with gambling
or even out of the perceptions that they have formed. America, in general, has
faced rapid legalization of gambling over the years with New York not being
left behind. In New York, gambling is one of the things that every individual
will give a try at least once in their lifetime. New York first legalized
lottery in 1967 as the second state in America after New Hampshire (Korn and
Shaffer, 231). By 1970, New York passed a law that allowed off-track betting on
the horses marking the beginning of the New York City Off-Track Betting
Corporation that began its operations in 1971. New York was fast at passing the
initial legislations to allow Casinos to operate in the City, and it is this
that continues to raise public debate on the issue from across the divide.
Today\, charitable gambling, pari-mutuel and Lotteries, casinos and others
apart from commercial gambling are legal in the City. It is this that makes it
essential to be able to make an analysis of the pros and the cons of legalizing
gambling before making any premise of taking a standpoint on the issue.
of legalizing gambling
gambling results to enormous revenue generation for the state governance. The
revenue is raised through the taxes, regulatory fees and other charges imposed
on the gambling businesses. It is a venture that may gross to over fifty
million dollars on an annual basis thus indicating its viability to the City of
New York (Korn and Shaffer, 234). It is the revenue collected from gambling
that further leads to tax cuts in other sectors and also it may balance the
financial needs of the city leading to increased income for the individuals and
also the state governance. The places of gambling also result in other indirect
revenues to the government through the growing tourism of gamblers from other
parts of the world in search of the experience. It is a business that has made
states such as Las Vegas the hubs of tourism both domestic and international.
The tourism, in turn, results in huge financial gains to the state and the
Source: (Williams, West and Simpson)
Global online report as illustrated indicated in a study by Williams, West and Simpson
illustrated in figure 1 above indicates rising gambling revenue to the
respective countries over the years. It is therefore, imperative that New York
legalizes gambling so that they may not miss out in the opportunity to tap the
extra revenue that comes with gambling.
economic benefits that come with gambling are also an ideal way to stimulate
the economy of New York. The legalization of gambling such as Casinos came at a
time that the City and the Country, in general, faced the huge financial crisis
(Rowen and Marcum). However, the billions of dollars generated every year
through gambling may be the economic boost that the City requires and is very
exciting particularly in the troubled economic times that the country is in.
moreover, the revenues would otherwise be lost if the gambling was illegal yet
individuals still engage in it at the underworld.
gambling is a classic manner of taking the control away from the underworld and
the organized criminals. It weakened the power and also the influence asserted
by such criminals such as embezzlers, armed robbers, drug lords and others that
use the casinos and other underworld gambling areas to engage further in crime.
They also use such gaming areas at stabilizing their criminal empires due to
the massive revenues generated from the business to the individuals and also
such grouping (Johansen, 86).
gambling is also a significant way of changing and also shifting the legal
behavior among individuals regarding the issue of gambling (Rowen and Marcum).
It is natural for individual to want to try out the actions or behaviors that
they have been otherwise told not to engage in as they raise their curiosity to
the same. However, if individuals are told to gamble at free will, it might be
a tool for reducing the illegal gambling associated with increased crimes and
solidification of the criminal gangs.
has also resulted in increased revenue and earnings for the majority of
families and individuals. The standards of living for some people that win the
lottery and other gambling may be shifted and lifted high in a fortnight (Rowen
and Marcum). There are also some individual that are so good at gambling that
they rely upon it to increase their earnings through gambling in sports and
other gambling centers that they are confident in engaging in and still win.
Moreover, the gambling dens such s casinos, the lottery and other forms of
gambling areas even the online ones result to the need to create more jobs.
There are thousands of people that are employed in such areas right from
getting jobs as security people, attendants, secretaries and so much more.
of gambling also further leads to the increased security of the citizens that
may be engaging in the act. There are instances whereby individuals engage in
gambling and as a result of their sheer perfection they can win games but some
gambling centers especially when illegal may refuse to give the winnings to the
individual (Rowen and Marcum). The winners or losers may also be at risk from
the fraudulent gambling centers that have faulty systems or that use deception
through tampering of the systems so as to ensure that they make more profits on
a daily basis. There are also a lot of crimes related to gambling disputes. If
the law protects an individual, they may choose to file a lawsuit against any
gambling center or individual that they feel had acted in a manner inconsistent
with the gambling laws. Therefore, avert from solving such disputes on the
streets that may result in violent crimes in the process (Korn and Shaffer, 230).
gambling also offers a way for the government to come up with intervention
mechanisms, campaigns and also educating the public on safe gambling and also
on their rights and how to protect themselves from being defrauded. Gambling
just like drugs such as alcohol may be very addicting, and therefore, there is
a need to have interventions for such individuals (Rowen and Marcum). If the
people are left in the underworld businesses, then there is no way the person
may see for help if they have a gambling problem in fear of prosecution but if
legalized and then the government creates systems of rehabilitating such
individual, then it would lead to reduced impacts. Moreover, the government may
also increase the awareness of the effects of excessive gambling or even engage
in capacity building endeavors to educate the public on safe gaming. The
government can also be able to establish controls and statutes that oversee the
gaming industry thus controlling its effects since when left in the underworld,
it is still widely practiced, and there is little that the government can do to
help the victims and all those affected by gambling (Rowen and Marcum). It is
just like alcohol and cigarette smoking that are legal, but there are controls
instituted to ensure that the public remains informed and engages in safe
disadvantages of legalizing gambling
has been associated with increased financial losses and making of poor
financial decisions. Ideally, an individual should only engage in gambling with
the money that they spare and not the money that they intend to use on the
basic needs since the outcome has a very high uncertainty. It is like investing
in a very high-risk business and therefore, should be ready to lose (Basham and
White). However, when gambling is legalized, yet there is a majority of the public
that has little or no information and insight on the best gambling behaviors,
then individual may end up losing a lot of their finances. There are cases of
individuals losing all their lifetime savings through gambling others even
gambling on their personal assets leading to massive financial losses that may
result to frustration and further impoverishing of individuals. If a person
makes a loss and cannot accept it, they may also lead to gambling another time
even with borrowed money to recover what they had previously lost.
is highly addictive among individuals and just like any other addictions; it
may result to adverse. Addiction to gambling just as addiction to drugs and
Alcohol has negative effects on it only the individual but also the others
around them including their family members (Basham and White). The gambling
addicts are not self-conscious and may not know when to stop and accept a loss
or rather be content with their winnings but may end up betting off everything
they own. There are cases of individuals that may bet off even their personal
assets such as cars, houses. With the legalization of gambling, then
individuals are more encouraged to engage in it and thus increasing the
addiction rates in the City (Basham and White).
are also some indications of the connection between gambling and the growth in
crime rates. The crime rates may result from individuals that may have lost
everything through gambling leading to crime to recover their losses
(Darian-Smith, 30). There are also other that may have increased income from
gambling and may be irresponsible at managing such income. They are, therefore,
tempted to engage in further crimes such as drug abuse. As a leisure activity,
gambling involves other illegal activities such as prostitution, money
laundering as the individuals avoid taxation and also in drug addiction as the
gambling may result in an increase in the costs and expenses of controlling its
effects, operations, and consequences. To maintain the standards and also the
laws set in place to control gambling there is a need to institute policing
policies, may even establish a gaming control unit (Darian-Smith, 30).
Establishing and running such units is expensive to the state and therefore the
argument that it brings in revenue, such expenses may lead to the expenditure
of that revenue collected through the legalized gambling. There are also some
other costs that the state may accrue through the lost revenue generation by
individuals that may become gambling addicts and end up affecting their
productivity and may incur further costs at rehabilitation (Basham and White).
Source: (Williams, West and Simpson)
Canadian Community Health survey 1.2 in 2012 as reported by Williams, West and Simpson
as indicated in the Figure 2 above indicated that despite the problems that the
antigambling associate with the legalized gambling, the gambling presented
moderate and low risk to majority of the gamblers. The fe4serach indicated
that gambling was a non-problem to 71% of the respondents. It is therefore, clear
that regardless of the problems affiliated with gambling as shown by the
negative effects of legalizing it; the benefits outweigh the negative
consequences of gambling.
conclusion, legalization of gambling in New York continues to be subject to
debate and also controversy in a major way. Gambling may be defined as the act
of risking something of value in pursuit of something else of which its
attainment is uncertain. Legalization of gambling in New York has been a
process that has taken decades to the point at which it is at today. The law
enforcers, the public, and other stakeholders had to make a real cost-benefit
analysis before making legalization of the various types of gambling. There are
a series of advantages that come with the legalization of gambling. Such
benefits include the revenues raised from the business to both the public and
also the state. However, other cost implications are a consequence of
legalization of gambling. Nevertheless, it is apparent that legalization of
gambling has more advantages than the disadvantages and that the benefits
outweigh the consequences of its legalization.
Basham, P.& White,
K. Gambling with our future? The costs and benefits of legalized gambling.
Fraser Institute Digital Publication (Canadiana No. 20020102449). Vancouver,
B.C.: The Fraser Institute, 2002. Retrieved April 27, 2016, from
Darian-Smith, Eve. New
Capitalists: Law, Politics, and Identity Surrounding Casino Gaming on
American Land, Wadsworth/Thomson Learning, 2004. Pp. 30
Johansen, Bruce. The
Praeger Handbook on Contemporary Issues in Native America, Westport,
Praeger Publishers, 2007. Pp. 67-100.
Korn, D. A., &
Shaffer,H. Gambling and the health of the public: Adopting a public health
Journal of Gambling Studies 15:4, 1999; 223-234.Retrieved April 27, 2016, from http://0-www.springerlink.com.aupac.lib.athabascau.ca/(0vjqmai4f5lx2545p1dhobuh)/app/home/contribution.asp?referrer=parent&backto=searcharticlesresults,1,15.
National Affairs, Inc., 2014. Retrieved April 27, 2016, from http://www.nationalaffairs.com/doclib/20080527_197403602howmanygamesintowntheprosandconsoflegalizedgamblingjessmarcum.pdf
Williams RJ, West BL, & Simpson RI. (2012). Prevention
of Problemm Gambling: A
Comprehensive Review of the
Evidence, and Identified Best Practices. Report prepared for the Ontario
Problem Gambling Research Centre and the Ontario Ministry of Health & Long Term
Care. October 1, 2012..http://hdl.handle.net/10133/3121
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