A ruling issued by the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) could result in new jobs and added revenue for Americans, but history indicates that these anticipated benefits are anything but a sure bet.
According to Monday’s SCOTUS ruling, states can legalize sports betting – as the federal prohibition on state laws authorizing sports betting violates the anti-commandeering rule.
For more than half a century, most states have had laws on the books barring sports betting, but some states, including New Jersey, have recently started to view it as a potential to create jobs and generate revenue by opening up casinos and allowing sports betting to be legal.
Baptist Record editor William Perkins, who is also a member of the Mississippi Baptist Convention Board (MBCB), stressed that he heard the same thing in the 1980s and 1990s about gambling in Mississippi.
"We were promised the world with casino gambling," Perkins recounted. "The streets were going to almost be paved with gold, [and] there would never be a child that would need a textbook or a bus ride to school if casino gambling was just legal, so please tell me how that has helped Mississippi.”
He went on to explain that gambling advocates failed to deliver on their assurances – or delusions of grandeur.
“Are we off the bottom?” Perkins asked. “We were on the bottom before casinos. We're still on the bottom of so many categories that the politicians promised us would pull us up off the bottom … if we just had casino gambling."
The conservative Christian leader does not see anything different with sports betting.
"All we're interested in is money, and the Bible is very specific about that subject," Perkins asserted. "You cannot worship two gods, and right now – as we have been since casinos were installed – we're in the process of worshipping money … because that's all we ever hear about."