POV | When is gambling not gambling?
On Sept. 14, we will see a brand new facility for gaming here in Louisville.
But let's call it by its proper name. It's gambling, which is interesting, because Kentucky Republicans don't like that word. They have been resistant to accept casino gambling in this state, because they think they are protecting the poor and ignorant from themselves. And while they've been protecting us - denying us the right to vote on the issue ourselves - they have been missing an opportunity to generate hundreds of millions of dollars for the commonwealth for education, roads and even debt repayment.
Meanwhile, Kentuckians simply go over the border to the more progressive states of Indiana or Ohio to gamble.
I always thought we should offer five casino licenses around the state at $300 million each. Let Vegas casinos pay that. Then, when they get their license and build their casino, we tax their earnings forever. But who needs a few extra billion in a rich state like Kentucky?
No, Kentucky would rather pretend we don't gamble. Of course, betting on horses has happened for more than 150 years. We have the Kentucky Lottery, and soon, you can bet on historic horse races. Religious conservatives don't want casinos, but let's not forget about the bingo parties thrown at churches.
It's time we stop pretending we don't condone gambling and start letting casinos work for Kentucky.
I'm Bill Lamb and that's my point of view.