Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Sports Betting Legalized? Well, Non-Illegalized, actually.

from Jeff Darcy,  Nailed it! 

         The Supreme Court ruled that sports betting is legal.  Or to be more precise, it is not up to the Federal government to prevent states from having it if they want. 
    There are different ways to look at it.  In general I'm personally against gambling, because I think it is proven that a certain percentage of people can get addicted to it. But the issue of whether or not you or I favor sports gambling is not the same issue as who should decide the policy.
    There are a lot of activities and products that you or I may not like but others might hold the opposite value. I'm not crazy about drugs, alcohol, motorcycles without helmets, cars without seatbelts, junk food, guns, and any number of unhealthy products and behaviors.  But in a free society if a majority or even sizeable minority really want to use these things, having been apprised of the downside, I don't think it should be the role of the Federal government to pass laws that are against the will of the people.  In the case of sports betting millions of Americans play fantasy sports or have an office pool on the Super Bowl and March madness.  So, are we going to put 100 million people in jail for these transgressions?  I don't think so. 
     Moreover, in many cases, the Constitution of the United States stipulates what things are going to be done by the President, what things are done by the Legislature and what things are left for individual states to form a policy for.  On any one issue, it is possible that, say, the US Senate and House might provide a bill that agrees with yours or my opinion.  But that doesn't mean that the Senate and House should be granted  the right to regulate it for all time.    
      Many forms of sports betting are currently legal in Nevada, because the Federal government passed special laws to that effect.   Well, okay, that's nice I suppose.  But now they have something they can hold over the Nevada legislators. Perhaps some future Senate Majority might demand,  "You either vote for my issue, or I'm taking away Federal permission for gambling in Nevada."   No doubt this threat has already been used in the past, to some degree or another.   Are we okay with that?  Or is that giving too much power to the Federal government?         One of the strengths of the American government  is that it has many checks and balances that prevent any one person from getting too powerful.  In recent years, however, the trend has been to give more power to the Federal Government, and especially to the President. The party in power seems to figure, "Who needs checks and balances?  Just give the power over to the Senate and House, or better yet, to the President."   
     If you're on the political left and think that giving more peer to Congress and the President is a great idea, Senator McConnell and President Trump are glad to have your support.   
       I would probably not want to have my state pass a flurry fo laws enabling expansion of the already problematic gambling industry in Ohio.  But overall it is probably better for each state to decide its own future.  I think there has to be some form of sports betting given the fact that so many Americans participate in it. 
       So, what are the odds of Pete Rose getting into the Hall of Fame?  

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