- Politics and Social Issues
Gamble Screening: Gambling is a Privilege, Not a Right
Gambling is incredibly popular amongst poor, government subsidized individuals. “The [legal] lottery is a dominant force and many poor and modest-income residents are devoted to an endless search for winning numbers in an unswerving belief that a jackpot waits for them” (Abadinksy, 2003, p. 233). Many poor, government subsided individuals believe in luck and a quick fix to their poverty. These beliefs cause them to make foolish financial decisions and gamble away any earnings they make or any monetary government benefits they receive. A solution to this problem is imperative, yet simple. Gambling is a privilege, not a right. In order to legally gamble, United States citizens must provide identification to purchase a lottery ticket or enter a casino. The identification must be quickly scannable and linked to government information. A scanned ID should instantly pull up information on the individual. If the individual is receiving government financial assistance, he will not be able to purchase a lottery ticket or enter a casino. This screening for lottery ticket purchase and gambling will help ensure government benefits are used as intended.
Government financial assistance to individuals in need should be used for the basic living necessities, such as shelter, food, and clothing. Gambling is not a necessity; therefore government-provided assistance should not be used for gambling. Often families receive government assistance and the children never see the benefit because the parents frequently gamble the money away. A gambling screening process will greatly reduce gambling by poor, government subsidized families. The determined will find a way to beat the gambling screening process via fake identification, by having ‘gambling approved’ friends buy lottery tickets, etc., however, the gambling screening will prevent the majority of poor, government subsidized families from gambling. Without gambling, government subsidized families will have more financial resources to help better their situations.
In order for the gambling screening process to be effective, it has to be implemented across the entire United States. A driver’s license should suffice as a gambling screening card. If a person does not have a driver’s license, they must apply for a government ID card that can be scanned and used for gambling screening. To prevent long queues at casino entrances or at the lottery counters, the screening process must be quick and simple. The scannable ID should be read via a swipe, much like a credit card reader. A small display should instantaneously display a Gambling ACCESS GRANTED or Gambling DENIED status. A cleared individual may purchase a lottery ticket or enter a casino. A denied individual will not be allowed to purchase a lottery ticket nor enter a casino.
Gambling is a privilege and those requiring government financial assistance should be denied the privilege to gamble. One must be able to take care of himself and his family without government assistance before being allowed to legally gamble. The gambling screening process ensures individuals allowed to gamble are not currently receiving government assistance. This gambling screening process is not a fix for poverty in the United States, but it is a step in the right direction to ensure government financial aid is used for living necessities and not gambling.
Reference: Abadinsky, H. (2003). Organized crime (7th ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth Learning.