Casinos, Gambling, And Their Impacts Essay

2380 words - 10 pages

Casinos, Gambling, and their Impacts
In a recent trip to Reno, Nevada for a basketball game we had the opportunity to gamble for those of us that are of age. This was not my first time gambling; however, it made me wonder a little more about how casinos operate, but more specifically how they affect individuals and the community. There are many casinos in the Chicago area, where I am from. The reason this trip made me wonder more about casinos more is that I witnessed someone win three-hundred dollars, and then lose two-hundred of those. In the attempt to regain back some money he had lost he ended up losing all of it. After losing he was contemplating on risking his last fifteen dollars to ...view middle of the document...

He continues to go to the casino at times even after his loss. Here it is evident how the casino engages someone to continue gambling. Once you start winning it can be difficult to turn away from it. Then I looked at other instances where it is not the first loss at a casino, but still continue to go; myself, for instance. I personally enjoy the aspect of gambling in general (it is always better when I win, however). Although there have been cases from people losing just small amounts of money to losing completely everything, to me gambling is just entertainment. Others see it as an opportunity to win money, or even become professional gamblers, such as poker players.
I remember the Grand Victoria Casino in Elgin, Illinois opening up only about fifteen years ago. I personally knew people that have lost almost everything from just staying in the casino all the time. Even when I went there during the summer I noticed people that are there every time I go. Not all the changes from the casino have been negative. I have noticed some changes throughout the community, as well. The landscape of the city surrounding it has become more appealing, as well as other improvements that continue to expand throughout the city. There have been more festivities in the community hosted by the casino that have been attracting more and more people to the city Elgin. It seems to have shifted to become a safer city as well. According to the Elgin Police Department the rate of the overall crime has declined by over forty percent in the past decade and a half. These are some of the impacts on the community that I have noticed at first-hand. There have been many positive influences coming from the development of the casino, so I wanted to see if how similar these effects are across the country.
The Community Research Partners were funded by the city of Columbus, Ohio to conduct an objective research on casinos, done in January of 2011. This research looked closely at other previous researches done on casinos and pointed out obvious, so they set off to conduct an unbiased case study to gather the most accurate information possible. Their findings suggested that the clearest social impact from the development of casinos was the increase of pathological gambling and problem gambling. A pathological gambler is a compulsive gambler, and a problem gambler is addicted to gambling. Approximately one-point-two percent of adults living near a casino become pathological gamblers in the United States, and one-point-five become problem gamblers. This likelihood doubles for the people living within fifty miles of a casino. There were certain statistics that they came across that stood out to me. The percent of people that filed bankruptcy between non-gamblers to problem gamblers increased by seven percent, and pathological gamblers more than doubled that amount. Twenty-two percent of non-gamblers had poor health in the past year, and thirty-one percent of pathological gamblers...

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