Member of the engineering faculty at the University of Rhode Island. Former candidate for RI state representative of Cumberland. The opinions expressed here are his own. He writes a semi-sporadic commentary series called "Uhtime", usually on RI politics, often written in the wee hours of the morn, which is where the name comes in: "uhtime" is the period just before dawn. Yes, it is a real word.

6 responses to “RI’s Gambling Addiction: Vote No on Questions 1, 2”

  1. jgardner

    A. I’m assuming you feel the same way about the state lottery?
    B. A 45 minute drive to a CT casino is not a large enough disincentive for a gambling addict.
    C. We should be allowing full casinos in this state, including sports betting. People are going to do it anyway, and we might as well keep it above board.
    D. I’m still going to be voting No on Q1 and Q2 because if you read the actual proposal, it doesn’t allow table games operated by the casinos, it allows State-operated table games. IMO the State has far more important things to be focusing on than running table games at Twin River and Newport Grand.

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  2. Samuel Bell

    Plus there is the whole issue of the Narragansett getting denied their casino.  If anyone in this state deserves one, it is them.

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  3. leftyrite

    Great job, Gus.

    This piece was highly readable, and its arguments made total sense.

    My father’s father ended up abandoning his once-loved faliy, a wfe and seven kids, due to the causes mentioned above. This all happened in the later 20’s, early ’30’s, so you can imagine…

    My Dad vowed that he would never end up like his old man, and he certainly didn’t.

    But, it’s a hell of a thing for a family, or an individual, to recover from the addicted behavior of a loved one. Betrayal after betrayal after betrayal.

    It’s an integral part of the state’s DNA, though. People in suits discuss gambling, with straight faces. 

    One more reason why it’s certainly OK to be dissatisfied and to work for progressive change. 

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  4. Barry

    Thanks Gus for this persuasive argument.  In the mathematics world we sometimes refer to gambling at casinos as a measure to swindle the mathematically ignorant.

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  5. Lauren

    And, Newporters, the real question is question 8.  That is the home rule question. That question will really make the issue sink or swim.  

    Newporters, voting No on numbers 1&2 is not enough.

    Vote “No” on question #8, as well, to stop expansion of casinos in Newport. 

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  6. Living in Newport

    Excellent points in the article :
    I’ll add – Indeed it’s hard to believe casino promoters claiming they focus only on “responsible, recreational gamblers” and gambling addiction is not a big problem. Nationwide, between 35 – 50 % of all casino revenue actually comes from gambling addicts! Without revenue from gambling addicts casino profits plummet. Furthermore, studies show people living within 10 miles of a casino are twice as likely to become problem gamblers than those who live further away.

    Gambling addiction has been compared to alcohol addiction.  While that comparison has some parallels, in other ways gambling differs from the situation with alcohol addiction.  We already have laws on the books and training programs for people in the hospitality industry to refuse serving alcohol to an obviously inebriated person.  Someone can actually be arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol.   In the casino business, there are no rules to stop serving a problem gambler. The emphasis is on encouraging more gambling from everyone.  That’s the business of gaming.
    Voting no on question 1, 2, and 8 here in Newport

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