Northwest Voices | Letters to the Editor
The problem with America's gambling addiction
Posted by Letters editor
Taking a closer look
Problem gambling is a serious issue that the game industry works hard to address, but I feel compelled to correct the false claims that Neal Peirce builds his argument around in his guest column, “America’s gambling addiction” [Opinion, Aug. 28].
If these claims were true, states with commercial casinos would be centers of depravity instead of home to successful communities that see casinos as valuable community partners. From Biloxi, Miss. to Davenport, Iowa, countless firsthand accounts from residents repeatedly affirm casinos as true assets to the region.
After taking even a cursory look at the claims of the negative social costs at the heart of this piece, it is clear that Peirce is focusing on misinterpreted information.
As an example, a closer look at all of the data gathered in the Nevada problem gambling study indicates the prevalence rate in Nevada is more in line with national rates than Peirce would have readers believe.
In truth, if expanded gambling led to more pathological gamblers, the prevalence rate for the disorder would have increased as game has expanded in the past 30 years. On the contrary, it is settled science that the prevalence rate hasn’t changed, instead holding steady at approximately 1 percent of all adult Americans.
— Frank J. Fahrenkopf Jr., president and CEO, American Game Association, Washington, D.C.
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