Piece of Mind: Casinos Die A Needed Death
You can count me as one Texan who is glad that the Legislature fell short in a plan to put a measure on the ballot that would determine whether we should allow big-time gambling at casinos in the state.
I need to stipulate that when the Texas Lottery came into being in 1991, I argued on behalf of the newspaper where I worked at the time against the creation of the lottery; it was approved by something around 70 percent of the vote.
Whatever. The Sands Hotel of Las Vegas decided to invest a good deal of money and its standing trumpeting the casino idea for Texas. You’ll recall those TV ads, I’m sure, prior to the end of the Texas Legislature. They told us how so much money was leaving the state when Texans were gambling their savings away in casinos in neighboring states. The TV spots sought to persuade us that it is better to keep the money in this state; thus, the campaign for casino gambling took root.
I also want to declare that I will not use the euphemistic term for gambling, which is “gaming.” There are those associated with the gambling industry who don’t want to refer to this activity what it is: You gamble on the chance that you’ll strike it rich at the blackjack table, the roulette wheel, the craps table, the slot machine … or whichever form of gambling you prefer.
The Texas Tribune reported that the Sands proposal was to build casinos in the state’s four largest metropolitan areas, making them “destination resorts.” Well, that includes the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area where I live with my wife No thanks, Sands. I have no interest in squandering my money at one of those destination resorts.
The Tribune published a story explaining how the gambling expansion failed. You can read it on the link I have attached below.
And so, the Legislature adjourned without getting the gambling idea placed on the ballot. That is more than just fine with me.
Just so you know, I have played the lottery twice. Shortly after the lottery came into being, I bought a ticket and won $3. That put me $2 ahead, given that I paid a buck for the ticket. I played it a second time. I didn’t win anything. So, I quit while I was a dollar ahead.
I don’t need to be tempted again.
John Kanelis, former editorial page editor for the Amarillo Globe-News and the Beaumont Enterprise, is also a former blogger for Panhandle PBS in Amarillo. He is now retired, but still writing. Kanelis can be contacted via Twitter @jkanelis, on Facebook, or his blog, www.highplainsblogger.com. Kanelis' blog for KETR, "Piece of Mind," presents his views, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of KETR, its staff, or its members.
Kanelis lives in Princeton with his wife, Kathy.