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The Russian roulette of sports gambling

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May 14, 2018 is a day that will live in infamy for so many that wanted separation between professional/collegiate sports and gambling due to the Supreme Court decision to strike down a law that prohibited this activity. States were ruled to make their own decisions and quite a bit have allowed this activity within casinos or on mobile devices.

The issue of concern here is not the ability to wager or whether your state should allow in a gaming facility or mobile, but how much control do people have and whether organizations or colleges will use this method to their own benefit. Sports gambling has been around for longer than most can imagine but granting this activity during modern social media and as an entertainment purpose could cause demise.


Gambling in the sports industry, whether professional or amateur, brings an economic revenue that has never been seen before. More people participate, which allows businesses to prosper with job potential instead of Vegas books controlling every aspect of sports gambling and it is not just limited to the casino industry anymore. Social media, food and entertainment are involved like they never have been before.


Virtually everyone has something to do with sports gambling now as the multibillion-dollar industry that became a staple in society along with insurmountable risks. Not only are these risks on individuals, but professional and amateur athletes are developing this activity into a haven for gambling addictions.

Athletes are now four times more than the average person, becoming gambling addicts. Since this industry is exploding in the U.S., it’s increasingly clear that states and organizations are ill-equipped to handle the damaging effects of problem gambling. While sports gaming could see a five-fold increase in revenue by 2025, according to a report from Morgan Stanley, resources to educate the public or help problem gamblers are still lagging the industry’s growth.


Sports gambling itself is perfectly fine. In no way, is this not a form of entertainment and building progress towards competition. Having fun at social interactions with tailgates or watching games is healthy and should be welcomed in our society. Old-school horse races are still one of the backgrounds of American democracy where betting is encouraged.


Despite allowing this activity, one detail to consider is sports integrity. In the symbiotic nature of the sports and gaming industries, is it tough to see how this would not lead to more gambling addiction problems?  Were states ready to control this even through the new methods of online betting made it simpler?

Obviously, people want more and more access, like alcohol, but unlike a bartender who cuts you off after a few too many, is there someone to stop you when you have the mortgage to your house on the line?


This column does not want to stop the sports betting industry, as I participate quite often, but there is one thing everyone should remember: DON’T BET MORE THAN YOUR WILLING TO LOSE.

Even with plenty of sports professional betting networks, podcasts, and other forms of media now, there is NO PERFECT. The best of the best are lucky to win over 60% of the bets and they evaluate every single game to the core that most average people just look at the spread or numbers.

There is no real change in site for any state legislature to act on gambling addiction plus most professional organizations (such as the NFL) don’t raise questions to attack this, so control and integrity of the game should be handled in one thought: These are games that should be played for fun and victory without care for any other purpose.

The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the views of SuperTalk Mississippi Media.

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