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Bench Talk / Off The Wire

Don't Hold Your Breath, Ontario


By Fred Wallace


Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire ".

The United States Supreme Court, in a 6-3 vote last week, cleared the way for states to legalize sports betting.

The decision, a no-brainer in my view, erases a 1992 US federal law that had prohibited most American states from authorizing sports betting.

The decision is seen as a major victory for New Jersey and their faltering economy plus several other states who have considered allowing sports gambling as a way to encourage tourism and tax revenue.

For Nevada, this potential door opening might be a blow, but if I have choice of traveling to Vegas or Jersey for a vacation with wagering, guess where I'm going.

Sure, there's all kinds of political avenues to be travelled before implementation across the U.S. and I'm certainly not getting overly excited about the potential of this new dawn arriving in Canada, or Ontario. Our politicians and the various " I-know-what's-best-for-society groups probably will never back off in my lifetime to see such a simple measure approved.

Which is a shame.

It's a shame because all we have now is Pro-Line, which is a 25 year ripoff, a ripoff I refuse to participate in.

And it's a shame because as a Canadian citizen, I should have the freedom to do as I please, so long as my activities aren't criminal in nature.

And if I want to bet on the Leafs, the Raptors, the Blue Jays, the Argos or whatever on a game to game basis, who is the government to restrict me ?

Oh sure, they're looking out for my best interest.

But if I become a hopeless gambling addict, why then do a become the responsibility of the government ? If I'm stupid enough to blow all my cash on wagering, isn't that my problem ?

The US Supreme Court decision is a large step in the right direction. I can only hope the direction continues north to my country & province...but I doubt it.

I'm Fred Wallace

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