Gambling In The Bahamas: Should It Be Legalized?

2046 words - 9 pages

The right to gamble is a right given to several matured persons living in the United Sates for the purpose of amusement. The Oxford dictionary defines the word ‘gamble’ as playing games for a chance of winning money. Last year, the current Government of the Bahamas proposed a referendum that asked Bahamians about their views on gambling. The referendum asked Bahamians if they supported the regularization and taxation of web shop gaming. As noted in the results, the mass of the Bahamian people voted no against the referendum. Today, the gambling issue has reawakened and Bahamians are now in a fight against the laws of their country. Several Bahamians believe that the law discriminates against ...view middle of the document...

Although there are fewer casinos in The Bahamas, web houses provide many jobs for Bahamians. As expressed in "7 Reasons to Vote Yes", the vote "yes" spokesperson stated web shops employ over 3,000 Bahamians. Legalizing gambling in the Bahamas may influence Bahamians to open up more casinos that will provide more jobs. As noted in "Labor Force Nov.2013", In New providence, the unemployment rate in the Bahamas stood at 15.6 per cent. As proven by the results, the amount of Bahamians employed by casinos and web houses decrease the unemployment percentage because; web houses and casinos provide jobs for many Bahamians. Therefore, if the government prohibits gambling this will inevitably negatively affect the unemployment percentage. Although gambling provides jobs for many Bahamians, the after effect of Gambling can cause an increase of bankruptcy that can increase poverty in the Bahamas.
In the last quarter of 2008, the Bahamas experienced an economic downturn that resulted in a recession. As a result, many Bahamians received unemployment benefits. As expressed in “Harms of Legalized Gambling”, a national study found that counties having at least one gambling establishment averaged 18 per cent more bankruptcies than those counties without gambling. If the county had five or more gambling facilities, the increased rate was 35 percent and higher. In 2006, 228 callers to Arizona’s Problem Gambling Helpline reported some kind of household payment default related to gambling debt. This represented 22.5 per cent of the callers. In addition, Nevada, being the thirty-fifth most populous state, ranks fourth in terms of total bankruptcies. As noted in "Social and Economic Effects of Legalizing Gambling", in one study (Ison, 1995a), the records examined suggested that 20 per cent of all bankruptcies filed were gambling related of the 105 gambling filed. The average gambler owed more than $40,000 in unsecured debt and possessed an average of eight credit cards. In addition, those credit cards had balances that exceeded from $5,000-$10,000. Acknowledging the evidence above, legalizing gambling may cause an increase in bankruptcies throughout The Bahamas. Bankruptcy and low income may lead to poverty. Legalized gambling in various countries caused bankruptcies therefore; legalizing gambling in The Bahamas has the potential to increase bankruptcies that can lead to poverty. Although legalizing gambling may cause bankruptcies and lead to poverty, gambling can generate revenue, which can decrease the nation debt.
According to Tribune business editor Neil Hartnell, in 2013, The Central Bank predicted that the Bahamas national debt would increase to $5.5 billion dollars by the end of June the following year. As noted in Gambling in The Bahamas, according to Acct. John Bain, during this bad economic time revenue is actually up in casinos and lotteries. In addition, he stated that a casino industry owned by Bahamians would not downsize because people...

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