Blogging the News

Since no bet is safe bet, why not make it a legal one?

December 3, 2014 Written by | No Comments

IFWT-Sports-BettingOn average it is believed that Americans bet just under $400 billion yearly on sports.  It is a custom that has been happening for years onto decades and it is quite popular across the nation. Sports’ gambling is something that many partake in illegally, so many that the government might as well regulate it.

While some fans may believe sports gambling itself is an ethical issue. I believe the impacts of not legalizing it makes for a bigger ethical issue. Simply due to the fact that legalizing sports betting will reduce the amount of illegal gambling that happens in our country. Illegal sports betting can undermine the integrity of a sport itself. Fans become fans over the dollar and not for the game or sport being played. If sports betting were to be regulated the odds of the gamble will be fairly set and determined, while the payoffs will be based solely on athletics and team performance; and not to forget legalization can create taxation which will turn around and help the economy of the nation.

One of the main impacts of legalizing sports gambling is that legality can protect against fraud and theft. Millions of people within the United States gamble outside of legal settings without government protection. These gamblers are left vulnerable to unscrupulous characters such as the typical bad-guy sports “bookie” that is portrayed in many movies. Legality will assure on a fair playing field for sports betting. Reducing the risks of being scammed or having one’s life being put into danger. It also would leave for states to bring in millions and eventually billions of dollars that would not go to supporting criminal enterprises but instead to an economy that is in need of a push.

Yesterday on December 2nd 2014, authorities arrested 14 individuals that were linked to a sports gambling ring that stretched from New York to Florida. The ring allegedly rang in millions each month over a 16 month investigation period by accepting bets on professional and collegiate sports illegally. It was also found during investigations that the gambling ring had ties strongly connected to organized crime. It is yet to be determined if any dangers were related to the ring, but due to the fact that this is just one ring compared to the many that exist it should open eyes and call for legality of sports gambling.

Ethical issues are prevalent to almost every issue in society. Is it ethical to allow the continuation of illegal gambling, when the easy solution would just be to legalize it? Or is it ethical to allow negative headlines to be associated with sports, which is common pastime for many? The fact of the matter is that Americans have always bet on sports and they always will. It is in the best interest of the nation to protect against fraud, theft, crime, and danger. These are effects that should not be associated with sports, which outlays mostly positives to society.

1Recent curiosity found me to visit Resorts World Casino, which is locally the closest gambling venue. The establishment is fairly new as it only opened late October of 2011. Here I was able to speak to customer service supervisor, Walter Chapels; and he answered some questions of mines. He stated that “most people gamble for the thrill of risking for a nice payoff”. The casino is packed on daily basis because most people want the feeling of being a “winner”. After all, isn’t a sport a competition in which results in a winner and loser? Shouldn’t the average fan be entitled to the feeling of winning like their’ favorite athletes and teams? Sports’ betting essentially provides this, as placing a wager on the NY Giants defeating the Dallas Cowboys provides a fan with the opportunity to be a part of the game. If they lose they will feel in lowliness and if they win they will feel in glory just like the team betted on.

Chapels “believes sports betting legally can be bigger than slot machines and table games”. Reason being is that people become inclined to sports and they can gain knowledge just by being fans and with the analysis of stats and schedules. If sports betting were offered at Resorts “many would come in daily just for that” he noted. He further told me about how some of the busiest times occur during a big sports game. For instance during a popular Sun2day Night Football game in which people visit the casino just to watch on the massive screen located in the bar. The TV is proclaimed as the largest located in Queens, and provides fans the chance to view in life like sizes. Just imagine how beneficial it would be for casinos across the nation to offer sports betting as well as the opportunity to watch games in an abnormal environment for free.

Currently only Nevada, Oregon, Montana, and Delaware are states that offer some sort of legalized sports betting. But it’s clear, that the law doesn’t stop fans from trying to make a quick buck on a game. The most popular sport in which individuals bet on is Football, whether it be professional or at the collegiate level. According to the Fantasy Sports Trade Association, 33 million Americans play fantasy football. Many of which receive some sort of cash prize for winning dependent on league rules and dues. Fantasy football is an unregulated activity, but it is a form of gambling since people each contribute a certain amount to the pot, in order to win the pot. Also according to the same association, it was found that about $1.8 billion dollars changes hands through pools for weekly football games formed by friends, family, or in the workplace. This is also a ton of money that would be for the better if regulated.


A s5_1409924849_1eb0a13228262d67bc3c8ceee5414aa0urvey from, found that the month of March is huge for college basketball due to the March Madness competition. Firstly 1 out of 10 Americans play a bracket and wager on their selections. Secondly 25% of total illegal wagers on college basketball comes during this month. It is believed that $2.5 billion is invested during this span. Other major sports betting facts is that $30-$40 billion change hands because of the MLB yearly and college football accounts for $60-$70 billion yearly being gambled. Every year the day with the most sports betting going on is the Superbowl. It is probably the most viewed sporting event every year, and it also a day in which over 200 million people gamble worldwide on one game. It is believed that on average about $8 billion changes hands because of the Superbowl.

Most of the money that is exchanged due to sports gambling and betting is done illegally. Mainstreaming and legalizing it would take power away from organized crime operations, since they are the ones significantly behind illegal gambling. Legalization and regulation of sports gambling would also create new jobs and economic opportunities not only for the people but for casinos itself. As gaming establishments, they have recently been in quite a struggle. As many can see with the many closures going on in Atlantic City. Sports betting will help to develop popularity of casinos as they will bring in new consumers.

The legalization of sports gambling provides too many positives to not be considered. Ethically it will do better for the nation. As for sports itself it can eliminate the negative effects that come with gambling being illegal. Sports will now reside on being just sports because that’s what it is, the gambling aspect since being legal and regulated would have minor effects on performances.

Categories: Ethics · Gambling · Law · Legality · Sports Gambling