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A Gambling Solution

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Please allow me to add my ten cents worth to the current debate concerning the forthcoming poll on gambling in the Bahamas.

Personally, I consider myself to be agnostic when it comes to legalising gambling, be it in the form of a national lottery, numbers, horse racing, poker or church raffles, and I too have been known to have the occasional flutter.

As with any potential vice, I do not consider myself as having broken any moral law just as by taking a glass of wine or a pint of beer does not make me a drunkard who is beyond redemption and will thereby incur eternal damnation.

My reading of the sheep’s entrails suggest that the vote for some kind of gambling, be it a national lottery and/or legalisation of numbers and web shops, when it takes place in January next year is that the vote will be “yes”.

It is my contention that the solution to government’s current dilemma is quite simple: do a reverse BTC i.e. nationalise all gambling (as is the case in some countries I believe) with the possible variation, should this be the government’s intent, of letting existing web shop owners have an interest in the nationalised industry, say forty per cent, with the people holding an interest of sixty per cent through the government.

This proposal would have the immediate effect of letting the current government “off the hook” so to speak vis-�-vis the various web shop owners whose investment in machinery etc, would be taken over by the new gambling entity. Should a national lottery be deemed a necessary and valid requirement now or in the future, then the national gambling corporation would be in place to own and support it.

STEPHEN KNOWLES

Nassau,

November 18, 2012.

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