Comments about ‘Utah was opposed to gambling long before statehood’

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Published: Saturday, Sept. 1 2012 3:39 p.m. MDT

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Hutterite
American Fork, UT

The mormon church was opposed to gambling long before utah statehood. The church I'm forming, however, is fine with it. In fact, it's going to be pretty much mandatory. So, are we good to go with our chapel/casino or is my version of christianity under attack in america today?

Rifleman
Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: Hutterite American Fork, UT

The majority of Utahns don't want gambling in our state. Unlike Nevada we don't allow tolerate brothels either. For those with no moral compass I can see why they must find Utah to be a pretty dull place. If I were in their shoes I'd move to a state where I'd fit in.

dtup
slc, UT

I am proud to live in a state that is "peculiar" from most all other states in the union in regards to the subject of gambling.
It is interesting to hear stories from friends and coworkers who gamble and how they have gone to casinos or purchase lottery tickets and to hear the justifications they use and about all the money they lost. I respect there freedom to choose yet I have to shake my head to know that money could have been used for higher, better and nobler purposes.

very concerned
Sandy, UT

I have personally witnessed gambling tear a family apart. The man bet - and lost - so much family money that his wife was obliged to start a separate and inaccessible (to him) checking account. It was having serious repercussions on the family finances. I have also seen in Atlantic City the blight that happens within a stone's throw of the the boardwalk.

It is fleeting entertainment and comes at a huge cost. It may be *fun*, but it is also addictive.

dave
Park City, UT

Rifleman,

Have you personally polled a majority of Utahns? Have you been ordained to speak for a majority of Utahns?

Are you saying that your "morals" trump everybody else's morals? Are you familiar with bingo night at Catholic churches? Are these believers immoral because they do not believe as you?

Utah is a state in the United States. Deal with it in that freedom is a double edged sword. Anyone has a right to move here.

These anecdotal one off stories about gambling problems are sad. However these will occur whether gambling is illegal or legal. Just like alcoholics, silly prohibitions mean nothing. These laws do nothing to protect an addict. They are window dressing feel-good laws.

very concerned
Sandy, UT

These may be one-time anecdotal instances, but in this case, they are all-to-indicative of reality for a significant slice of those who get hooked on gambling. Is it worth the risk?

And, as I understand it, prohibition of alcohol actually WAS effective in controling alcohol and it's related problems. *Silly prohibitions?* People just like to make fun of it.

I disagree. I feel they would serve us well. We acually have prohibitions/laws in place for illegal drugs. There's really just not much difference. Alcohol is similar to illegal drugs in that it can be addictive and it is unhealthy for the body. That is not anecdotal. Cirrhosis of the liver is just one result. Deaths from drunk driving is another. Ruined lives and families can be a result as well.

The fact that casinos make healhy profits proves what should be logical to all. Gambling is a business in which the owners win and the customers lose. The odds are always in the house's favor. Vegas was not built on winners. It may be a little entertaining for the moment, but the risk is just too high and the rewards are fleeting.

dave
Park City, UT

very concerned,

Every example you proffer is extreme. Addiction, cirrhosis, prohibition, hooked, deaths, and ruined family lives. These are things that will happen whether or not there are laws. There has and always will be gambling, alcohol and drugs legal and illegal.

Good laws are not passed based on anecdotes. They should reflect thought, research and effectiveness. It is obvious that many of our laws fail this necessary test.

You are the first person I've run across that says that prohibition was successful. I suggest that you read a history book. We are experiencing the same thing because drugs are illegal. The violence, underworld, underground (untaxed) economy...

Gambling can be and is fun for a vast majority of gamblers. Most have no negative affects. To lump them in with problem gamblers is irresponsible.

We can't protect everyone from every perceived evil. Freedom involves risk and to remove risk is to remove freedom. Either you support freedom or you do not.

Rifleman
Salt Lake City, Utah

Re: dave Park City, UT
"Have you personally polled a majority of Utahns?"

The only polls that count are the ones taken on the first Tuesday in November in years that we vote for the political candidates we want to represent us. When it comes to gambling and brothels I'll let you decide when the morals of the majority trump those who favor those kind of activities.

very concerned
Sandy, UT

This article is on gambling. But to rebut the comments that claimed prohibition was basically a joke, please see an example of an opposing view. The editorial, *The US prohibition experiment: myth, history, and implications*, (with references), in the journal, Addiction, Volume 92, Issue 11, Article first published online: 24 JAN 2006. It does not settle once and for all whether prohibition was effective in it's goals, but it does give one pause to ponder an opposing view to the perhsps-biased hisory we all learned in school. Never mind checking medical textbooks about the dangers of drinking.

As far as gambling, a quick search of Google Scholar will give a lot of information from reputable academic journals on the social effects of gambling.

The myth that we can't - or shouldn't - effectively limit personal habits that are damaging to society is not bourne out. When we get a head of steam (as a society) and want to stop certain behavior deemed damaging, we can - and have - make great progress. Consider smoking, slavery, & drunk driving among others.

lds4gaymarriage
Salt Lake City, UT

There is a host of do- gooders... ready to solve all human problems with
legislation, willing to impose their version of the millennium on you and me,
unwilling to rely on the judgment of the individual. (The Teachings of Ezra Taft
Benson, p. 628)

The greatest right humans possess is the right of free choice, free will, free
agency. This above all is what today's true conservative strives to preserve for his
fellowmen and for himself. Ironically, it is this very objective that has helped to
give credence to the myths. Because the conservative fervently believes in human
freedom, he is slow to tell everybody else how to run their lives. It goes against
the conservative grain to be a political, social, or economic busybody, and
especially to beat the drums for government action on virtually every existing
problem. (Ezra Taft Benson - The Red Carpet, p. 210.)

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