Article Examines History of Gambling

A Las Vegas Review-Journal article was published over the weekend discussing the history of betting based on technology developments, written by David G. Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada.

Schwartz supports gambling in the US and the article reviews gambling over the last one hundred years and the government’s attempts to ban.

Schwartz wrote: "So today’s world of remote poker and casino gambling via the Internet isn’t as brave or new as we think.

"What lessons does the past offer? The hundred years’ war against the wire didn’t stop play. Those vulnerable to gambling problems didn’t get help. Gangsters fuelled urban corruption. Tracks (and governments) lost money. Above all, it was profoundly difficult to uncouple gambling and technology; people like to gamble, and they like convenience.

"Still, potential problems can be mitigated. Those who are fearful of a future where gambling is accessible on a phone might, instead of arguing for prohibition, focus on responsible gambling efforts so that problem gamblers struggling with traditional or new ways to bet can have better support.

"A century ago, when all but two states prohibited gambling, a federal ban on remote gambling got a poor reception. Today, when forty-eight states and the District of Columbia allow it, the case for federal action is even more dubious.

"By acknowledging that remote gambling is better handled through careful regulation and control, we can avoid the grind of prohibitory efforts that, history suggests, will ultimately crumble.

The article in its entirety is available here: www.reviewjournal.com/opinion/prohibition-not-right-answer-online-gaming.


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