There are renewed calls to legalize gambling in the State of Alabama.
Advocates claim that current illegal gambling can be solved by changing the state constitution to make what is now illegal legal. Enforcement of current law and/or increased fines and penalties for illegal and unconstitutional betting is a better answer to the current levels of lawlessness in Alabama. Curtailing gambling is an honorable endeavor, the expansion of gambling isn’t. Online gambling—on sports or anything else—would turn every smartphone in the state into a portable casino. Where there are more opportunities to gamble, higher rates of addiction and negative societal impacts follow. In addition, as state support systems and welfare programs will have to grow to meet new needs, increased burdens fall back on the taxpayer.
API’s report outlines that states that have legalized gambling experience higher rates of gambling addiction, crime, corruption, addiction, and mental health disorders. With more opportunities to gamble, the negative impact of gambling increases. This is especially true as gambling is normalized for children; early and increased exposure to gambling leads to increases in addiction that can cause emotional damage, strained relationships, and financial ruin.
API commissioned a study on the state of gambling in the state of Alabama and one thing is abundantly clear –
Gambling is a bad bet for Alabama families.