September 30, 2022 | La Opinión

Editorial Board: No on Proposition 27

Among the ballot propositions put to the vote on November 8 are two related to expanding legal gambling in California. 

One of them, Proposition 27, is dangerous and harmful. Their reasoning is not convincing and, on the contrary, they try to attenuate the true nature of the electoral measure. The voters of the state would do well to reject it on November 8. 

This is a constitutional amendment capable of unleashing the largest expansion of sports betting in state history, when every cell phone will become a home casino, without having to travel long distances. 

Invariably, as history shows, making gambling easier will increase gambling addiction, especially by minors. Because that is exactly what it is about. 

As is known, people with lower incomes and lower levels of education are the ones who become the easiest victims of gambling games. 

The cynicism of the authors of the measure is reflected directly in the title: “Legalization of sports betting and income for the homeless prevention fund initiative ”, as if both were related, showing that it is an attempt to pretend that the law would be intended to help the homeless , when, if it is approved and implemented from next January, it would be the other way around. It could increase the number of underdogs among those who lose everything by gambling. 

And even if Proposition 27 passes and a few tens of millions of dollars are dedicated to the homeless , it will not have an impact on their situation, since this year the Legislature has dedicated more than 13,000 million dollars to alleviate the problem of homelessness. homeless. 

Behind Proposition 27 are the big gaming companies FanDuel and DraftKings, which together control 90 percent of the daily fantasy sports market.

 Contrary to what is claimed, that sports betting causes addiction is not new. Especially when combined with gambling. 

In 2021, the first year of legalizing sports betting and online gambling in the state of Michigan, more than 4,400 calls were made to the problem gambling helpline, four times more than the previous year .

We are especially concerned about the danger of addiction among youth. As much as gambling is said to be for people over 21, in the more than 30 states that have legalized sports betting since the Supreme Court allowed them to do so, the rate of problem gambling among high school students is double than that of adults. Those who start gambling at the age of 12 are more likely to develop this addiction. 

In addition, the text of the proposal stipulates that those who want to participate in the bonanza that will come if it is approved, must make a deposit of 100 million dollars, and it is about convincing us that it is a disinterested help from the casino companies. That deserves that we support them for their supposed generosity. But is not. 

First because it is reimbursed with the money that is supposed to help the homeless. It is not a gift. And second, because this large sum of money will leave small companies out of the competition that, unlike the two that promote and finance Proposition 27, cannot pay those 100 million.  

Simultaneously, the legalization of this type of gambling in California will undermine the revenue base of Indian casinos, where gambling is limited in nature and within the same premises, and which financially helps the lower income sectors of the state. And even if Proposition 26 passes, allowing sports betting inside those casinos, Proposition 27 will be just as destructive to tribes. 

In sum, Proposition 27 is a bad idea.

So on November 8th, vote NO on Proposition 27!

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