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Time to Discuss the State of Gambling in America

Maybe a site that has a founder named “The Addict” isn’t qualified to comment on Time Magazine’s recent take on the rise of gambling addiction in America.  But then again, it is our site.  And we like commenting. 

While the article tackles what may cause gambling addiction (an area of the brain “known to be involved in processing dopamine, a pleasure-inducing chemical released during drug and alcohol use”), the only real gambling recreation it discusses is…of course…poker. 

According to a recent study, apparently an area of our so-called “brain” lights up, “when test subjects gambled, becoming active not only when they won but also when they merely expected to win...”  What the article fails to discuss are effective ways to determine “tells” on people when this occurs.  But then again, we guess that wasn’t their intended focus.  Still, they could’ve thrown us a bone here.   

Ew Wicked Chops Poker does wonder though if that same area of your brain lights up when viewing some of the pics we post regularly on the site (for example, like the one of recent Bodog celebrity poker winner Estella Warren on the right).  Maryann Guberman of casinogambling.com probably isn’t one of those people, as she writes that she could, “do without the girlie pictures.”  Then again, we suppose it’s OK, so long as you keep enjoying the content. 

Getting back on point, the Time article does provide some interesting stats, such as: 1) yet another reference that “50 million people” are at least occasional poker players; 2) that 1 million people will tune in to ESPN's broadcast of this year's World Series of Poker (although we think it’ll be much more); 3) for those addicted to gambling, we now have 247 Native American casinos in 22 states; 4) and if that’s not enough, 84 riverboat or dockside casinos in six states can quench our gaming thirst.

Further, to illustrate the hypocrisy (and lost revenue opportunities) by states that find poker to be “illegal,” there are 48 states now that do “have some form of legalized gambling.” In other words, lotteries that take advantage of the poor and are purely luck = yes.  But a game of skill and advanced thinking = no. 

If you ask us, that’s the true travesty of the state of gambling in America.  And it's about time that changed.

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