Letter: Legislature must stop digital lottery plan

Legislature must stop digital lottery plan

To the editor:

I was appalled to read the July 14 editorial "The many hazards of a digital lottery." What planet is state Treasurer Deborah Goldberg living on?

Anything that whets the appetite of a person prone to gambling should be of concern to all of us. Would you put a shot of whiskey in front of an alcoholic and say "Just one won't hurt?". Would you give a pain pill to a recovering opioid addict to "make him feel better"? We don't know who among us has a tendency to become an addict and sometimes that person doesn't even know it. But once the addiction is established, it's extremely difficult to turn back the clock.

Ms. Goldberg told the Boston Globe that online or mobile device games are "the only way to reach the younger market." She wants the games to boost lottery sales. The players would be able to use credit cards and so-called "rules" would be used to establish gambling caps they cannot exceed. Really? Ms. Goldberg must believe there is such a thing as "easy money" because that is what many gamblers believe.

I quote two Eagle's comments:

"...the ability to play online video games quickly and 24 hours a day is an invitation to gambling addiction and credit card debt."

"If lawmakers approve this modest first step, and approve a pilot program, they should have no illusions about the ultimate cost."

I urge legislators to do everything they can so Ms. Goldberg's plan never becomes a reality.

Connie Dillon Yannone, Pittsfield


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