Gambling is beginning to gain some approval in the United States. Per a recent Gallup poll, nearly two-thirds of Americans now find gambling to be morally acceptable.
The poll included randomly selected adults via phone surveys and was conducted in May. The findings showed roughly 67% of U.S. citizens don’t see gambling as immoral, while just 27% view gambling to be “morally wrong”.
The survey included a variety of questions, ranging from gambling to birth control, divorce and sexual relations outside of marriage. The Gallup poll covered 19 subjects in all, with gambling ranking fourth highest in regards to moral acceptability. Gambling also ranked third last under “being wrong”.
Of the categories, just divorce, birth control and sex outside of wedlock were regarded as more acceptable than gambling. Per the poll, suicide, polygamy, human cloning and men having affairs ranked the lowest.
This combines with similar findings recently specifically in the sports betting realm.
Just in April, a Seton Hall University poll revealed that a similar two-thirds of U.S. citizens felt that sports gambling should be legal.
The poll had 63% of Americans in support of legalized sports betting, while 29% were against. Those that were for legal sports betting also felt that individual states should be free to determined whether or not sports betting should be allowed. A total of 68% agreed that sports betting should be discussed only on a state level, while 21% felt it was a federal matter.
The interesting part about gambling is that either take is completely subjective. Most don’t have a problem with gambling or more specifically sports betting, online poker or even daily fantasy sports, because it’s not an addiction or a means of making a living.
Instead, gambling is a leisure activity and done more for fun. In fact, the opposite spectrum is the only part of gambling that can be argued as immoral: when people are playing with money they don’t have or with more money than they can afford to lose.
Gamblers facing addiction absolutely should manage their wagering and frequency and get help if they need it. The key, of course, is true moderation at all levels, both in how much one bets and how often one plays. If gambling is treated more as a fun, leisurely activity, then it is less likely to become addicting.
A strong argument can be made for all types of gambling to be legalized across the board, largely because of the money in can bring into communities via jobs and taxes. Public perception leaning towards backing gambling certainly doesn’t hurt, either.
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