To the Editor: Casino gambling preys on the most vulnerable PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Rev. Marla E. Brown   
Thursday, 29 October 2009 08:34
People are understandably concerned about jobs and economic security.  Many are praying for a solution to the economic crisis we face.  However, if they are looking at Issue 3 as a solution to our economic woes, they are placing their hopes in the wrong place.  Gambling does harm to those most vulnerable in our communities - to our neighbors, family, friends, and to the poor.  It changes the very fabric of life in a community.
Issue 3 will not provide hope for the future, but instead will harm everyone but the predatory casino owners.
Detroit has had casinos since the 1990s. Look at Detroit today.  One casino is filing for bankruptcy. Unemployment has skyrocketed.  Addiction rates are astronomical.  Detroit is one of the poorest cities in the country.  
What makes us think that we will have a different outcome in Toledo, Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus if Issue 3 passes?
As United Methodists we strive to live by three simple rules - Do No Harm, Do Good, and Stay in Love with God.  I pray that all the voters in Ohio will understand that casinos do harm.
¥ Casinos increase addiction. Addicted gamblers provide 40-50% of a casino's profit.
¥ Casinos increase crime.  Crime will increase 10% each year after casinos are opened.
¥ Casinos damage communities.  Small businesses close as people spend their money in casinos.   
¥ Casinos cost jobs.  Each slot machine costs a small business one job due to loss in revenue.
¥ Casinos cost taxpayers.  For every $1 in government revenues, taxpayers will pay $3 in social costs.
¥ Casinos are predatory.  Casino gambling preys on the most vulnerable in our communities.
While I understand that people might be drawn to vote yes on Issue 3, predatory gambling is not the answer to anyone's prayers.  Issue 3 is a dangerous amendment which will bring predatory gambling into our communities.  I urge every person in Ohio to stand with us on Tuesday and vote no on 3.
Rev. Marla E. Brown
District Superintendent
Maumee Watershed District
West Ohio Conference of The United Methodist

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