The Impact of Gambling in America

2867 WordsNov 9, 200812 Pages
The Impact of Gambling in America The impact of gambling on the United States carries both positive and negative effects into our society and communities. Gambling is a leisure activity that usually provides excitement and fun for its players. Gambling also brings tremendous amounts of money into the economy and provides employment. American cities such as Las Vegas and Atlantic City thrive off of the gaming industry. Sure, gambling can be fun and exciting, but at what point does that fun activity develop into a pathological problem? I will contend that the harmful side- effects of gambling far outweigh any positive aspects. Pathological gambling can destroy families, careers, and lives. The reason why casinos are so successful…show more content…
For example, in 1998 the bankruptcy rate in Atlantic City, New Jersey per 100,000 people was 1,019 while the rate of the state of New Jersey was only 555 (gao.gov). In 2003, there was a proposal to add casinos into the mix of Kentucky’s gambling options. Dr. John Kindt, a professor of commerce at the University of Illinois said that bringing casinos to Kentucky would be “bad economics and bad social policy”. “Studies show that within the 35-mile feeder market around a casino, gamblers will spend 10 percent less on food, 25 percent less on clothing and that 37 percent will dip into their savings to pay for gambling. For every three (video slot) machines, you'll be losing two jobs from the feeder market economy," Kindt said. “This occurs because each machine can be expected to bring in $100,000 per year that will not be used elsewhere in the economy” (kybaptist.org). This is a serious issue that occurs when business owners do not think about how their actions will affect others in the future. Not only does gambling affect the economy of our communities, but it also has social effects. There are many negative consequences of gambling, while there are minimal positive outcomes. Beginning with the positive side, gambling is a recreation, a break from the everyday pressures of life and a relief from stress. People feel good about themselves when they do hit a jackpot or “win big”. Without gambling, certain sports such as horse racing and boxing would not be nearly as
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